Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, on Tuesday, said the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), is only meant to interpret and not to make laws.
Akeredolu said this while reacting to the Federal Government’s declaration that the South-West security outfit, Operation Amotekun, is illegal.
Malami made the government’s position known in a statement on Tuesday by his spokesman, Dr Umar Gwandu.
However, the governor, in a telephone interview with Channels Television, said the South-West governors had not met on Malami’s statement.
“We have not met. When we meet, we will react appropriately, but one thing is clear, laws are not made in the office of the AGF. He is only meant to interpret the law,” Akeredolu said.
Our reporter gathered that the South-West governors would in the next few days meet and might resort to legal action against the AGF’s pronouncement.
Following serial killings and kidnapping allegedly by the Fulani herdsmen last year, the South-West governors, at a summit convened by the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria in June agreed to set up Operation Amotekun.
On Thursday, the governors inaugurated the security outfit, which would comprise the Oodua Peoples Congress, the vigilante groups and local hunters.
We had earlier reported that intrigues among the governors and interference by the Federal Government were threatening the operation of the security outfit.
According to the report, some elements within the Presidency and the police high command are not favourably disposed to the regional outfit because they consider it as part of the restructuring agenda which the South-West had been clamouring for.
On Tuesday, the Federal Government finally came out with its verdict on the outfit about one week after its inauguration. It said it was not carried along while the outfit was being put in place.
The statement read, “The setting up of the paramilitary organisation called Amotekun is illegal and runs contrary to the provisions of the Nigerian law.
“The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) has established the Army, Navy and Air Force, the Police and other numerous paramilitary organisations for the purpose of the defence of Nigeria.
“As a consequence of this, no state government, whether singly or in a group, has the legal right and competence to establish any form of organisation or agency for the defence of Nigeria or any of its constituent parts.
“This is sanctioned by the provision of Item 45 of the Second Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) authorising the Police and other Federal Government security services established by law to maintain law and order.
“The law will take its natural course in relation to excesses associated with organisation, administration and participation in Amotekun or continuous association with it as an association.
“Finally, it is important to put on record that the Office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice was not consulted on the matter.
“If it had, proper information and guidance would have been offered to ensure that Nigeria’s defence and corporate entity are preserved at all times.”