Owing the rise in crime in Ikorodu division in recent time, stakeholders and leaders of thoughts in Ikorodu did not only make moves but they came out with workable plans by establishing a formidable security programme which is orchestrated to drive away evil and crooked elements from the division.
With the formation of the Ikorodu joint task force under the aegis of Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative IDPIL, the leaders of thoughts brought together independent traditional security outfits which were hitherto functioning with low outcome, into a mega and stronger whole security outfit.
Oba Kabiru Shotobi, the Ayangbure of Ikorodu who invited High Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya, SAN, the Odofin of Ikorodu with other chiefs and tasked them to ruminate over a foolproof security plan for Ikorodu Division, knows the caliber of men he enjoined to take up the challenge of restoring peace to the great kingdoms. The High Chief led committee did not disappoint the monarch as they came out with massive plan to rid Ikorodu off unscrupulous elements. The Ikorodu Peace Initiative programme did not only bring together trusted men from the various independent traditional security outfits in the division, but made provisions for what these men would need to do a clean job.
As the day of the launching and unveiling of the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative finally came on March 9, 2022, Oba Shotobi knew his High Chief was ready to unveil the machines procured for the mega security forces to work with. On this day, spectators realised that Ikorodu is a land of men of substance who have the pedigree, well withal, affluence, influence, experience, connection and the will to make things happen. It was one of the largest launching of security outfit in Nigeria, as big names in the society, corporate institutions and foreign groups and government officials gathered to witness the launching and unveiling of the security forces in Ikorodu.
His Royal Majesty Oba Kabiru Adewale Shotobi is a king truly ordained by God in his time. Powerful men and women who have influence home and abroad, surround the paramount ruler of Ikorodu. High Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya did not only bring two of the biggest banks in Nigeria to donate to the new Ikorodu security programme, also, Asiwaju Steve Anifowhe brought large donations from distance friends in the United States of America. What happened in Ikorodu on the day of the launching of the Ikorodu Peace Initiative is novel, noteworthy and record shattering.
One of the most respected bank owners in Nigeria, Mr. Jim Ovia, founder and former chief executive officer of Zenith Bank, was billed the chief launcher of the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative, five regional directors of one of the powerful banks in Nigeria, First City Monument Bank, attended the event, six traditional rulers of kingdoms in Lagos and Ogun State were in attendant, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police and top police chiefs in the state attended, eminent spiritual leaders including the Ikorodu Chief Imam, the Oriwu Mosque Chief Imam, Christian Association of Nigerian President, Ikorodu Chapter, were all in attendance.
Senators current and past, federal representatives, state representatives, commissioners, heads of government security agencies, influential Ikorodu sons and daughters in high places all identified with the security programme launched in Ikorodu.
All traditional, spiritual and social groups in the division had their topmost men represented them at the Ikorodu town hall open field.
Media houses thrust their cameras and microphones in every direction to capture the euphoria of the day at the expanse of land at the Ikorodu town hall. In the middle of the field were lined 10 brand new executive cars, 6 brand new Hilux vehicles, forty brand new motorcycles all emblazoned with insignia of the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative. On either side of the automobiles were large tents covering curious spectators, while the front flank housed the traditional rulers with other dignitaries who contributed to the security programmes. Men and women of the newly founded security outfit were stationed in their full kits. All around the fence of the Ikorodu Town Hall perimeters, curious and excited people looked on through the grills.
Men of the Nigerian Police Force and men of the Nigerian Army littered around guarding their superiors and others and to protect the crowd to maintain law and order. After all the dignitaries and stakeholders took their seats, the event proper began as the compere spoke into the microphone greeting the traditional rulers, politicians, and top personalities. He invited two spiritual leaders to pray before activities of the day unfold. Sheikh Imam Sefiudeen Ademoritan Olowooribi, Chief Imam of Ikorodu Central Mosque led the opening prayer by reciting Arabic verses. Imam Olowooribi code switched to Yoruba language and made supplication to Allah for the success of the event.
After the president of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Ikorodu Chapter, prayed the Christian way, the national anthem followed immediately and things got formal.
The monarchs on the high table as introduced by the compere were His Royal Highness Oba Kabiru Adewale Shotobi, the Ayangbure of Ikorodu; HRM Oba Semiudeen Orimadegun Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo; HRM Oba Ajibade Mudashiru Bakare Agoro, the Ranodu of Imota; HRM Oba Bashir Aremu Sotonwa, the Sekumade of Ipakodo; HRM Oba Akeem Adeoriyomi Oyebo, the Obateru of Egbin; HRM Oba Richard Ogunsanya, the Olubeshe of Ibeshe; HRM Oba David Raji Balogun, the Eweye of Isiu and High Chief Aliu Musediku, Regent of Ijede.
Major dignitaries introduced at the event included former Chairman of Zenith Bank, Mr. Jim Ovia who was represented by Mr. Felix Mokha; Mr. Babatunde Folawiyo, Executive Chairman of Folawiyo Group of Companies (chairman of the day); Senator Tokunbo Abiru who was represented by Dr. Saheed Ibikunle; Honourable Babajimi Benson; Mr. Fola Tinubu, MD Primero Transport Service; Commanding Officer 174 Batalion Odonguyan Barracks was presented by Major Okoh; Mr. Kehinde Durotimi-Etti chairman Lagos State Security Trust Fund, represented by Mr. Adegbola Louis; Hon. SOB Agunbiade, Majority Leader LAHA; Honourable Abike Dabiri represented by Mr. Dapo and Asiwaju Steve Anifowoshe.
Key organisers and contributors who spearheaded the programme and were present included High Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya chairman IDPIL; Otunba Ganiyu Olusegun Abiru, Executive Secretary, IDPIL. Special guests and contributors to the security scheme were Asipa Kaoli Olusanya Olatunji; Colonel Bolaji Onafowokan; Engr. Rasheed Shoderu; Dr. Moses Oyebo, Hon. Adebimpe Akinsola; Engr. Lukman Erogbogbo and many others.
The compere of the occasion invited the chairman of the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative High Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya to give his speech. The Odofin’s reverberating voice in Yoruba greeted the audience. The billionaire lawyer who is also chairman of Multichoice Nigeria, paid homage to the monarchs. He thanked everyone for attending the event and gave the audience prelude to the day’s event. “Today’s event is a culmination of many months of brainstorming and strategizing among key stakeholders of Ikorodu Division, towards finding a lasting solution to the spate of insecurity being witnessed in parts of Ikorodu communities.
“More worrisome is the bad press being generated for the entire Division by these incessant criminal activities being perpetrated by some unscrupulous elements among us, which have negatively impacted on the peace and prosperity of our communities. We were left with no other option than to take proactive steps towards stemming this negative tide, by engaging both native intelligence and scientific approach which gave birth to the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative LTD/GTE which we formally unveiling today.”
High Chief Dewunmi narrated how Oba Shotobi once called him and Asipa to look into the security issue of the division and how they started from the scratch to design a blueprint for security machination to stop the rising spate of crime in the division. He remarked, “Like other developmental government responsibilities, it is high time security is seen as a collective responsibility of all stakeholders and, hence should not be left for the government alone. I am glad and proud to state that, Ikorodu Division has blazed the trail by being the first among the five divisions of Lagos State to embark on this well structured community sponsored security arrangement, aimed at complimenting the Lagos State Government’s efforts towards the security of the entire State.
“Let me state for the avoidance of doubt that, IDPILG is not in competition with the Nigeria Police and other statutory security agencies rather, we are partners in progress, towards securing our communities.”
While ending his speech, the Odofin Erujeje thanked all stakeholders for their contributions, especially the Lagos State Commissioner of Police and Assistant Commissioner of Police, Bode Ifakeye who facilitated the training of the security men. He received a standing ovation from the crowd as they cheered and clapped in his honour.
Following his speech, Oba Kabiru Shotobi was invited to give a speech. The paramount monarch of Ikorodu started by giving a rendition of a jubilation song. The people sang along as they congratulated one another by shaking hands. The charming eminent ruler of Ikorodu kept his speech brief. He spoke on the arrangements put in place for the officials who volunteered to join the security outfit. According to Oba Shotobi, officials of the newly formed security outfit will earn standard salaries scale; get health insurance, pension fund and other numerous benefits. The Oba prayed for the security men and women and blessed everyone who contributed to the success of the IDPIL.
He handed over the microphone to the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, HRM Oba Semiudeen Kasali who thanked all the donors and volunteers. The Ranodu of Imota Oba Ajibade Agoro of the trio Oba, appreciated High Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya for using his wealth to the benefit of the entire community. He made a powerful expression in Yoruba which got the crowd moved, saying, “Adewunmi “Owo ngbin kin” meaning, Adewunmi, the owner of gigantic wealth/money. The Ranodu thanked all the generous donors who contributed to the success of the security programme.
The representative of the Lagos State Commissioner of Police presented a note of appreciation to Adewunmi Ogunsanya and the monarchs for organising such a great project in their community. Fundraising to generate more revenue for the IDPIL programme followed the speeches. Mr. Uba Dike, Head of the Ikoyi branch of FCMB, Zonal Head of FCMB, Regional Director, FCMB, CEO of Multichoice Nigeria, Chairman of the occasion Mr. Folawiyo, and many key stakeholders pledged cash worth over one hundred million naira. Chief Adewunmi Ogunsanya personally spearheaded the fundraising session and ensured that reasonable sum was generated for the IDPIL programme.
There was an interlude where the famous Ikorodu Bois crew performed a live short playlet on the field where they dramatized the crime situation in Ikorodu and how the newly formed Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative men subdued the criminal elements disturbing the peace of the division.
The monarchs, police chiefs, and chairman of the day, major donors and the organisers of the programmes did the formal unveiling of the insignia of the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative. They proceeded to cut the ribbon on the brand new automobiles to be used by the men and women of the security corps. The dignitaries patiently inspected the guard of honour by men of the IDPIL. In their fully kited outfit, a unit of the security officials marched around on the field of the Ikorodu town hall and was applauded by the crowd.
The Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative LTD/GTE is a community initiative and evolved as a child of necessity inspired by the rising wave in crime and general state of insecurity within Ikorodu Division in the recent time especially the nefarious activities of the cult groups, land merceneries/land grabbers and some other miscreants, including yahoo plus guys whose activities are negatively rewriting the story of Ikorodu division.
At about a year ago, precisely 24th February, 2021, Ikorodu Division gave birth to a unique child, later Christened, Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative Ltd/GTE. Our first meeting was held in the auditorium of His Royal Majesty, Oba (Engr.) Kabir Adewale Shotobi, GCIO, who elaborated extensively on the sorry state of our community security.
Consequently, knowing the security peculiarities of the major towns in Ikorodu and noting the presence of vigilante groups in these towns, the IDPILG/G, in its wisdom, was of the view that its objectives could only be realized if there is one unified and well-coordinated operational arm of the body, hence, the inclusion of members from each of the vigilante groups into the local Joint Task Force after security scrutiny of the selected members.
For easy administration and efficient operation of the security operatives and following the existing Local Government/Local Council Development area structure, the Ikorodu division Joint Task Force was sub divided into six zones with operational heads. The Zones are thus categorized namely: Zone 1 Ikorodu Central, Zone 2 Ikorodu West LCDA, Zone 3 Igbogbo/Bayeiku LCDA, Zone 4 Ijede LCDA, Zone 5 Imota LCDA, Zone 6 Ikorodu North LCDA.
It is pertinent to say that with the composition of the Local Joint Task Force which of course includes members of the Nigerian Police Force, the operations of the LJTF’ have continued to yield impressive security dividends as the relative peace being enjoyed in Ikorodu Division today is to the glory of God and the Local Joint Task Force of IDPILG.
In order to ensure cooperation and amity without which there could not be any tangible success, the operatives were given the free hand to select their officers which resulted in the choice of Chief Lanre Olabinjo as the Commandant and to date, he has been discharging the functions of his office meritoriously.
The efforts of the organization are geared towards intervening in the Socio-Economic and Cultural activities of residents and citizens in furtherance of a functional and conducive environment that will create and promote opportunities for self-engagement and enhance business activities, trade, education and commerce.
Very importantly, this security outfit has been operating as one body with one aim and objective which is peace and progress to the entire division which hopefully will change the negative narration about the insecurity within Ikorodu Division as a whole. The project is viewed alongside Community policing, to compliment government programme/projects for a better Ikorodu Division in sync with the Greater Lagos State Agenda.
It is apposite to state that, with the approval of the Inspector-General of Police, fifty (50) of our security operatives had the opportunity and privilege in undergoing security training programme at the highly rated and prestigious Ikeja Police College.
On their return and with their exposure, knowledge and professionalism, they were able to train the remaining 150 of their colleagues, with minimum cost to the organization.
IDPILG can proudly boast of 200 well trained local security personnel who are capable of complimenting the regular security agencies in the discharge of their constitutional duties of protecting our communities. We must at this point thank, most profoundly, the Inspector-General of Police, Honourable Commissioner of Police Lagos State and Commissioner in Charge for training and other officials who made the training a success. It is necessary to stress at this point that the IDPILG is not in competition with the Police or any other security agencies in Ikorodu Division or anywhere in the state, but to seek their cooperation so that collectively, Ikorodu Division can become a safe haven for commercial and social activities to thrive.
It is unimaginable for our local joint Task Force to compete with the Nigerian Police and the thought should, therefore, not be contemplated. The IDPILG and our LJTF are working for the security of the Division in its entirety and therefore, its efforts are to complement those of the local government who should see the LJTF as partner in progress working collaboratively and supporting each other would be beneficial not only to the Local Government, but also to the entire Division.
“Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work, to change a small portion of events, and in the total of those acts will be writing the history of this generation,” Robert Kennedy.
We desire a situation where people as it was in days past, could work without any molestation or fear during the day and sleep comfortably with their two eyes closed at night. This is our objective and with your supports and collaboration, it shall be a “fait accompli.”
How To Get Involved:
· See Something, Say Something
· Provide anonymous information on criminals or criminal activities around you to our phone number or email address
Donate: You can also donate (cash or kind) to the IDPIL/G.
Donations can be paid into the account details below:
Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative Ltd/Gte.
Account numbers: Zenith Bank: 1220426906, FCMB: 8589171011
What Adewunmi Ogunsanya said
It is very heartwarming for me to specially welcome you, all our distinguished guests, to Ikorodu Division, on this very auspicious occasion.
Today’s event is a culmination of many months of brainstorming and strategizing among key stakeholders of Ikorodu Division, towards finding a lasting solution to the spate of insecurity being witnessed in parts of Ikorodu communities.
More worrisome is the bad press being generated for the entire Division by these incessant criminal activities being perpetrated by some unscrupulous elements among us, which have negatively impacted on the peace and prosperity of our communities.
We were left with no other option than to take proactive steps towards stemming this negative tide, by engaging both native intelligence and scientific approach which gave birth to the Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative LTD/GTE which we are formally unveiling today.
Like other developmental government responsibilities, it is high time security is seen as a collective responsibility of all stakeholders and, hence should not be left for the government alone. I am glad and proud to state that, Ikorodu Division has blazed the trail by being the first among the five (5) Divisions of Lagos State to embark on this well-structured community sponsored security arrangement, aimed at complimenting the Lagos State Government’s efforts towards the security of the entire State.
Let me state for the avoidance of doubt that, IDPILG is not in competition with the Nigeria Police and other statutory security agencies rather, we are partners in progress, towards securing our communities.
To this end, I want to use this opportunity to express our gratitude to the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, for making Lagos the most responsible state in terms of providing support to security agencies. Mr. Governor, Thank You Sir.
I also want to specially thank the Inspector-General of Police, the Commissioner of Police, Lagos Police Command and the Commissioner in Charge of Training for their massive support for IDPILG and for assisting with the training of our personnel.
We have invested heavily in the training of local security personnel drawn from various local vigilante groups, with a view to creating a command structure that would help coordinate their activities for effective result.
One of the major highlights of today’s event is the presentation of patrol vehicles and motor bikes to the LJTF operatives and security agencies in Ikorodu Division, in order to assist them in carrying out effective surveillance of the entire communities.
Ikorodu Division was known for security, peace and hospitality, and we are determined to restore her past glory, through this noble initiative.
We are, therefore, counting on you all to support us in this noble cause of restoring security, peace and prosperity to Ikorodu Division, the way it used to be.
Your Excellency, Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, may I use this opportunity to inform you that IDPILG is not only intervening in the area of security but also in other critical areas of human endeavours.
Within the next two months after the security structure must have been stabilized, our next port of call will be the Education sector and from there we move to environment. We believe very religiously that, though, the State government is doing its utmost to improve on all of those areas earlier mentioned, the government cannot do it all on itself without the intervention of well-meaning individuals, Corporate organizations and institutions such as ours.
We know with your support, Lagos State in general and Ikorodu in particular will respectively become what we dream of them.
Thank you for listening. God bless you all.
Long Live Nigeria!
Long Live Lagos State!!
Long Live Ikorodu Division!!!
Long Live Ikorodu Division Peace Initiative.