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Group calls for synergies among citizens, security agencies, others to avert terror attacks

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From Ighomuaye Lucky, Benin

The Executive Director, Connected Advocacy, Mr Prince Israel Orekha, has said that synergies among the security agencies, media and the citizens of the state can avert terror attacks in any given community in Edo State.

He said this at a town hall meeting in Benin, tagged Edo Act Now on Developing Early Warning System for Community Stakeholders, Security and Media, with the theme, “Community Organizing: The Role of Citizens in Environmental Conflict, Mitigation and Prevention”.

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Mr Orekha said the strengthening of the grassroots communities’ relationship with security operatives, and the human rights commission using the early warning signs to ensure prompt response  will deter attacks on communities,

He said, recently, the neighboring Ondo stat witnessed mass atrocity that they have never envisaged adding that Edo, a transit route to east, north and south is currently witnessed  pockets of violent attacks be urgently  in the bud by building a strong synergy with the security agencies and other relevant stakeholders in the state.

He said if something is not done urgently to increase citizens readiness and improve knowledge on early warning signs for citizens to know the appropriate measures to mitigate such attacks, more attacks may be visited on the innocent citizens.

He said the aim of the meeting is to build the capacity of key media and community stakeholders in Edo state on how to identify early warning signs and take required safety action to prevent the attacks and/or reduce casualty, strengthen the synergy between citizens, security agencies, media, and the human rights commission.

The Executive Director, Freedom of Information Counsel, President Aigbokhan, speaking on “Preparing a Safety Plan – steps to take before, during, and after violent attacks”, said  mass atrocity is an act of extreme violence inflicted on the communities by civilians and non civilians.

He said that there are internal conflicts in the various communities, stressing that the police should be encouraged to wade in should if their internal mechanisms of resolving crisis fails.

Pa Egharevba Felix, the Odionwere of Igolo community, lamented that they have been driven from their community by the Fulani herdsmen while their crops have become foods for their cattle.

He appealed to the federal and state governments to come to their rescue and put an end to the herders and farmers crisis in their community.

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