Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, has condemned the federal government’s declaration of the newly launched Southwest Security Network named ‘Amotekun,’ as illegal.
The Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, had on Tuesday declared the initiative as unconstitutuional and illegal.
Speaking at a press briefing in Lagos on Wednesday, Soyinka said a serious government who cares for its citizens would not object to such initiative.
“The initiative is quite legal and constitutional and in any case, the federal government should go to court,” he said.
Soyinka said it was disappointing to see the reaction to a very simple operation taken by South-West governors, in which “some people in high places speaking perhaps for the government objected the initiative.”
He added that the Amotekun operation was not only appropriately required, but long overdue.
Soyinka said it is the fundamental right of the people to defend themselves from killers and other unscrupulous forces that threaten their existence.
“I’ve always believed passionately in self-policing. If it is possible to eliminate any kind of formal policing, I will be forward. But there is a need for an organised security.
“To say that the people do not have a right to defend their lives, secure a livelihood and flush out the evil elements and pick up the slack that existing securities are unable to fulfil is an enemy action and inhumane,” he argued.
Soyinka said having “some people who have been sleeping all this while, taking belated actions, who watched all the security threats that citizens suffer saying the initiative is illegal and unconstitutional is unacceptable.”
He said a determined community policing unit can be very effective in taming criminals, and the necessary legal complications of the operation were considered by the governors before its launch.