By Isaac Olamikan, Senior Correspondent, Benin
Edo State Government and the State Police Command are set for war against kidnappers terrorising motorists along the
Benin-Lagos Road with the clearing of bushes on roadsides to check the activities of criminals on the axis.
Addressing journalists after inspecting the ongoing clearing of bushes around Okada, the Edo State Commissioner of Police, DanMallam Mohammed, said the bushes would be cleared 30 meters away from both sides of the expressway close to Ore axis of the Benin-Lagos Road.
He noted, “We found out that the kidnappers take advantage of the deep forest close to the expressway to hide their victims. With support from the Edo State Government, we are clearing the bushes along both sides of the road. With this, we can get a proper view of the forest and also apprehend the kidnappers when they try to run out of the forest.”
The state Police boss said members of the Command will patrol deep into the forest daily to ensure the camps of the bandits are destroyed while security presence had been beefed up along the Benin – Lagos Express Road.
He said the state police command had earlier raided the forest and destroyed hideouts before embarking on clearing of the bushes, adding, “This is a strategic security measure put in place to curb the spate of banditry and kidnapping in the state. The exercise started in the last two weeks in order to kick out bandits and kidnappers from the state.”
Motorists plying the Benin – Lagos Road, who witnessed the clearing exercise, commended the Police and the Edo State Government for the initiative to check the activities of kidnappers.
The clearing of the bushes is expected to expose kidnappers’ hideouts located within the Ovia North East and Ovia South West local councils, which lie on the expressway.