In an effort to cut the rate of kidnapping in the state, the Plateau State governor, Simon Lalong, has approved the death penalty for kidnapping in the state.
Lalong, who disclosed this during a worship service held on Sunday at Church of Christ in Nations, Jos, as part of activities marking this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day, insisted that his administration would continue to pay attention to the security of lives and property by adopting various measures to foster peaceful coexistence in the state.
He said kidnapping, cultism, and banditry will no longer be tolerated in the state going forward.
The governor said: “I am aware of the incidences of kidnapping, cultism and other violent crimes in some parts of Plateau State. The government is working hard with the security agencies and stakeholders to ensure that the ugly incidences are tackled.
“Last month, I signed the Anti-kidnapping, Land Grabbing, Cultism and Violence-related Matters Bill passed by the State House of Assembly into law. By that law, anyone convicted of kidnapping in Plateau State will be sentenced to death while cultism and other violent crimes attract various terms of imprisonment.
“We have to be proactive in preventing crimes through intelligence gathering and ensuring rapid response to any distress.
This is why even before the Federal Government decided to implement the community policing initiative. We engaged stakeholders in the state towards strengthening our Operation Rainbow to provide grassroots policing.
“In December last year, we inaugurated 595 community police constables who were trained and deployed to the 17 local government areas to assist law enforcement agencies, particularly the police, in intelligence gathering and other security operations.
“Since security is everybody’s business, I appeal to all citizens to always be security conscious and participate in protecting themselves against criminals before security agencies respond to their distress calls. Let us not live care-free and expect the security personnel to do everything.
“The security agencies as we all know have challenges of manpower, logistics, and equipment as well as training which most times delays their response and effectiveness. We need to join hands with them by doing our part and also passing accurate and timely information to them.”
“Rather than use the bad conduct of a few to condemn all of them, let us isolate the bad ones, and ensure that they are removed. We cannot afford to demoralize our gallant men and women at this time of insecurity in our country. We saw what happened during the #EndSARS protests when they came under attack physically and morally.”