By Olubunmi Adeyera
The Lagos State Government on Wednesday confirmed the release of the four pupils and teachers of the Lagos State Model College Igbonla in Epe kidnapped by suspected ex-Ijaw militants last Thursday October 6, 2016, assuring that the government would spare nothing until it rids the state of criminal elements.
In a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, the state government said the children had undergone medical check-up after which they were reunited with their families.
“The Lagos State Government today welcomed the release of the school pupils, vice-principal and head teacher of Igbonla Model College, Epe, who were kidnapped by suspected Ijaw militants on Thursday October 6, 2016.
“The children are doing well; they have been taken through medical checkup and have been safely reunited with their families.”
While restating the government’s determination to protect lives and property, Ayorinde, however, urged residents to be more vigilant, security conscious and report all suspected persons and objects seen within their neighbourhood to the appropriate security agencies.
“The determination of the government to ensure 24-hour security of the state is evident in the huge investment in the equipment and welfare of security agencies, especially the police”.
The commissioner, however, said government had taken adequate steps to stem the tide of kidnapping in the state, noting that in line with the directive of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, plans had been concluded to commence the demolition of illegal structures erected across the state waterfronts and creeks.
“Often times, the incidence of kidnapping are perpetrated through the waterways and as such, these illegal structures provide a leeway for these criminal elements to plan and execute their nefarious activities.
“This step, we believe, will go a long way to address this menace. “The State Government has also begun steps to boost community policing with the recent announcement by the Governor that at least 5000 neighbourhood watchers will soon be recruited to improve surveillance across the state, especially at the rural areas,” Ayorinde said.