The Sokoto State government has commenced the process of recruiting about 2,000 persons to serve in the state community guard corps.
The acting chairman of the committee, Honourable Yushau Muhammad Kebbe, made this disclosure while speaking with newsmen shortly after the governor signed the Bill establishing the corps into law.
According to Kebbe, “the recruitment exercise has commenced in earnest, and as of today, the final screening is in progress. We hope that within the next four days we would have finished the final screening and once the screening is over those who are successful will be going into training for about two months and they will be out hopefully with adequate training to enable them carry weapons in protecting our different communities.
“Also, according to the statement of the governor while signing the Bill, this community guard corps will not operate as the alternative to the existing federal security architecture in the state, rather, they are just complimentary.
“Their efforts in whatever it’s going to be will be based on the direction and spearheading of the existing security architecture, especially the military, which is directly involved in the insurgency situation.
“Whenever they are going to work, it is going to be along with the military, Police or rather the joint task force that is already working on this insecurity in the state.
“Many of the recruited persons, interestingly, as I discovered during my local government tours, are already on this local vigilante team, which the military has been making use of them before now in their operations. Some of them already have the local knowledge of the environment from where these bandits operate, so you will find out that the military always worked with them when they were going out.
“So, it is not a new thing. The only thing the government is doing now is to formalise that relationship properly and by giving them higher weapons better than the dane guns they were using before,” Kebbe stated.
He explained further that the other difference is to have an enabling law that will make their operations have legal backing because whatever they will do has to be guided by the law.
“Going forward, we expect to see that the security challenges in the state is being tackled and as we have started with the existing security architecture in the state (Federal Government security agencies), we are not waiting for bandits to attack before we respond but now, to chase them into their hideouts.
“This is a new development in the area of insecurity but we have to accept the fact that the number of security operatives that we have currently is not enough to confront these insecurity and every challenge that may arise which are part of the reasons we came with this idea of having about 2,000 additional hands, well equipped and trained to really make the difference.
“This is because the security operatives will now be able to confront the challenges head-on with more hands and resources.
“It is the hope of this administration that very soon, everyone will see clearly that the situation is being tackled adequately with an improved security situation in the state,” he stressed.