Cultism: Obaseki Bans Activities Of Okaigheles In Edo South

The Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, has taken decisive action to address the issue of cultism in the State by prohibiting the activities of Okaigheles (Youth Leaders) in the Edo South Senatorial District.

Naija News reports that Governor Obaseki made this announcement during a press briefing held at the Government House in Benin City, following a closed-door meeting with security Chiefs in the State.

This measure is part of a comprehensive strategy by the state government to combat cult-related activities and ensure the safety of the people.

Obaseki expressed deep concern over the alarming number of lives lost to cult-related activities and homicides since January 2024.

To effectively tackle this menace, the government launched a full-scale offensive against cultism.

A special task force, led by the Director of the Department of State Security (DSS), has been established under the Security Council.

According to the state government, starting tonight, the task force will diligently investigate and review every incident related to cultism in the State.

By implementing these measures, Governor Obaseki aims to restore peace and security in Edo State and ensure that the people can live without fear of cult-related violence.

The government remains committed to safeguarding the well-being of its citizens and will continue to take necessary actions to achieve this goal.

“We have just finished the Security Council Meeting where we reviewed the security situation in Edo State since January 2024 with particular emphasis on the security activities in Edo in May 2024.

“From the security management report which was considered in our security meeting, we still have a nagging issue in Edo State which is cultism. The incidence of cultism is very high.

“What is particularly worrisome about cultism is the related homicide that goes with cult-related activities. From January to date, we have lost over 150 people to cult-related activities and homicide. We can’t tolerate and accept this situation anymore.

“The Council today, amongst its decisions, has decided to go full blast against cultists and cultism in the State. We have now passed an anti-cultism law in Edo State and that law will be implemented to its fullest,” Obaseki noted.

Obaseki added, “We have set up a special task force of the security council headed by the Director of DSS that will review every cult-related occurrence in the State from tonight onwards. We will look at all the data, incidents, perpetrators, and those behind these activities, and we will make all resources available and leave no stone unturned.”

According to him, “Related to cult activities are activities of Okaigeles in Edo South. The Council has prohibited forthwith activities of Okaigeles in Edo State. Anybody who claims he is an Okaigele, operating in any community will be dealt with strictly by the law.

“The outcome of our security council meeting today is that the State has declared full war on cultists and Okaigeles in Edo State.”

On his part, the Commissioner of Police in Edo State, Funsho Adegboye, affirmed that the security agencies will carry out the directives of the State Security Council without bias or hesitation.

He said, “We are happy that the State has passed into law the anti-cultism bill as cultists had a field day in the State but this law has a stiff penalty for anybody involved in the act.

“His Excellency has equally directed that no matter how highly placed any individual is, they will be taken to Court and such a person will face the penalty.

“On the issue of the Okaigheles, we have been having problems with them as you can’t even separate them from cultism, and the Council has agreed that they are banned. Anybody arrested will be prosecuted diligently. Council also agreed to have a task force headed by the Director of the DSS.”

The Police Commissioner added, “This is to give members of the public assurances to carry on with their lawful activities. No time frame is given to the task force as long as the activities of these people persist. We will collaborate with the judiciary and correctional centres as they will help us with the new law, and the time for free bail for cultists is over. We are happy about this law and confident that it would change the attitude of cultists.”

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