The Governor of Anambra State, Charles Soludo, on Tuesday, said his administration has zero tolerance for louts who disturb the peace of the state.
This was as Soludo argued that Anambra is among the top three safest states nationwide.
“Anambra is calm, very calm Security, law and order is our priority. We don’t condone louting,” Soludo told State House Correspondents after he emerged from closed-door talks with Vice President Kashim Shettima at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Tuesday evening.
He warned that persons perpetrating crime and extorting businesses through illegal revenue collection must desist or face the full wrath of the law.
Soludo said, “I can tell you it (Anambra) should be certainly one of the top three in terms of safety of lives and property.
“Security, law and order is our priority, we don’t condone touting.
“All these people collecting illegal revenue and trying to extort and expropriate from people innocently will be kicked out.”
In mid-October 2023, the Obosi community in Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State declared war against criminals.
This followed episodes of criminal activities ranging from drug and cult-related activities leading to several killings, including the murder of a former President-General.
About three weeks earlier, the Anambra State Joint Enforcement Team of Operation Clean and Healthy Anambra (OCHA Brigade) said it arrested 14 suspects using fake military uniforms to commit criminal activities in Onitsha and its environs.
The Managing Director of OCHA Brigade, Celestine Anere, said the suspects were arrested across various locations in Onitsha.
Over 600 persons identified as touts were arrested in different parts of Onitsha and its environs in the past week.
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The state government says the campaign is its persistence on the war against touting recently declared by Governor Soludo during the recent launching of an anti-tout squad known as the State Anti-Touting Squad.
At the State House, Governor Soludo stressed Anambra’s status as the home of commerce, adding that the state government entertains the harassment of citizens by touts.
“Anambra is a state home of commerce and we don’t want people harassing others who come in and we have zero tolerance for that kind of miscreants,” he stated.
Soludo assured citizens that his administration is ready to train as many who are interested in acquiring various skills and will also provide them with start-up funds.
He explained, “We have a message for them, if you need a job, just come out. we give you training and we have some start-up funds for you to begin afresh and take a new life.
“But if you choose to expropriate from others innocently then we have no room for that in Anambra state.
“So if you are a tout go else but if you are productive engagement, that’s Anambra, it is a home of enterprise not a home for lazy people who want to get something from nothing.”