The Plateau State Commissioner of Police, Adekunle Oladunjoye, has said the police would deal with anyone caught harbouring suspected Boko Haram insurgents in the state as principal offender.
He stated this in Jos, the state capital, after a security meeting with some community leaders and groups.
A security committee, comprising district heads and community leaders, retired and serving police officers was inaugurated after the meeting. It will meet monthly.
Mr. Oladunjoye said anybody found breaching security in the state would face the full weight of the law.
He said intelligence reports available to security operatives in the country showed that suspected Boko Haram insurgents were scattered all over with a view to causing mayhem.
He asked members of the public to report them to security operatives.
“Intelligence reports available to us have indicated that Boko Haram insurgents are in most parts of the country (and) so we in Plateau State have taken measures to contain them, we are on red alert,” the commissioner said.
“We advise that people should be on the watch. No one should harbour insurgents; if you are caught harbouring such persons, we will treat you as a principal offender.”
Mr. Oladunjoye said the police were ready to curtail activities of insurgents, saying “due to the intelligence reports, we have intensified intelligence gathering, particularly search on petty traders.”
He debunked the claims in some quarters that they were plans by unnamed persons to assassinate prominent politicians in the state.
He said, “I’m not aware of such rumour. What have they done to be assassinated? But let me warn that such rumours are too expensive, and anyone caught abusing the minds of citizens on such grievous issues will be arrested and prosecuted.”
Speaking on the aim of the security meeting held, the police boss said it was a directive from the Inspector General of Police that all police commissioners in the country should collaborate with community and opinion leaders to stem insecurity in their domains.
Joseph Lengman, who represented Governor Simon Lalong at the meeting, said the government would support the police to achieve its goal of curbing insecurity.
Mr. Lengman, who is the director general of the Plateau Peace Building Agency, vowed that the government would not relax its efforts until permanent peace was achieved.
“The initiative by the police to involve other stakeholders in tackling insecurity is fantastic,” he said.
“Government will offer it full support; for the fact that we are enjoying relative peace in the state now, but we will not relax, that peace has come, government will continue to play its role effectively.”
Commenting on the alleged plan to assassinate top politicians in the state, Mr. Lengman advised that all citizens should be careful, as the entire country was at risk due to increasing criminality.
“We are living in dangerous times and so people should be careful. We should all be on the watch,” he said.