Bayelsa State Government has defended the establishment of Izon-Ibe Security Company saying it was part of efforts to address the challenge of youth unemployment in the state.
A Government House statement issued on Sunday, said the security outfit was basically set up to provide special training for youths and engage them for the purposes of security services.
The management of the firm, which has Chief Joshua Fumudoh as Chairman and Chief James Jephthah as Managing Director, with a representative of the Ijaw Youth Council, among others on its board, is expected to take steps to engage youths to go for the necessary training for job placements in the company.
According to the statement, the Izon-Ibe Security firm is a limited liability company that is a community-based security and empowerment scheme for Bayelsa youths across the communities with the active involvement of the chiefs and leaders to train youths in the surveillance of pipeline and guard duties.
It reads, “Our attention has been drawn to some ex-militant leaders, whose activities constitute a breach of the existing peace. Hitherto, they were beneficiaries of pipeline contracts which they failed to execute. Such ex-militants were being used by misguided politicians to embark on senseless public demonstrations within and outside the state capital.
“Sadly, these ex-militants, who have mismanaged the Amnesty programme to short change their followers, are again planning to use the innocent youths to play out the script of their sponsors to malign the state government and destabilize the state for their selfish financial interest.
“In addition to the Amnesty programme, which they control exclusively, these ex-militant leaders also have a share of the pipeline surveillance contract, but they are fighting to be the only ones to carry out this function throughout the state. They have no capacity to do this and it doesn’t make sense because there are so many youths and chiefs in the state that can also be involved in their communities for accountability.
“The position of the government is that, pipeline surveillance contracts are not for ex-militant leaders alone, most of whom hail from a particular local government area. The state-owned security company is for all persons in the state and will ensure that they are made to carry out their duties effectively. There are youths from other local government areas that must benefit from these contracts and not just Bajeros whose promoters are only from Southern Ijaw local government area.”
While calling on members of the public to discountenance the antics of some ex-militants who have become political jobbers and sponsored to cast aspersions on the good intentions of the government, it stressed that the restoration administration would not succumb to any form of blackmail and intimidation.
The statement, however, advised Bayelsans, especially the youths not to be misled by persons, whose stock in trade it is to put the communities and the state into jeopardy by their nefarious activities, urging them to desist from acts capable of breaching the peace.
The government warned Bayelsans, especially the youths to resist the temptation of being used by this group of persons to foment trouble, as the law enforcement agencies have been put on red alert to deal decisively with trouble makers.