The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has expressed appreciation to security operatives and members of the public for the safe return of abducted Chief Medical Director (CMD) of Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Prof. Sylvanus Okogbeni, calling for calm and vigilance among residents.
The governor, who said this in the wake of the release of the CMD, commiserated with the families of security officials killed during the kidnap incident.
In a statement by Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, Obaseki assured that government will not spare resources to ensure peace and security is sustained in the state, noting, “We are grateful to members of the public for their support and security agencies for their professionalism towards the release of the CMD, Prof. Sylvanus Okogbeni.
“I commend the security operatives for their steadfastness in ensuring his release. I thank Edo people for their support and prayers. I also call for vigilance among residents and security operatives to forestall future recurrence.”
Obaseki added: “The state government commiserates with the fallen police officers who put their lives on the line as first responders and I urge the families left behind to be strong and rest assured of government’s support in these extremely difficult times.
“We commiserate with the State Police Command over the loss of their colleagues and assure that government is strengthening its collaboration with all security agencies and deploying more resources to ensure that security is beefed up in the state to prevent the recurrence of this kind of incident.”
This is as the Edo State Branch of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), is jubilating over the release of their colleague, with the doctors calling for improved security in the state.
Chairman of NMA, Edo State Branch, Dr. Valentine Omoifo, who briefed journalists at Doctors House, Ugbowo, Benin City, said that they had planned a protest in Benin City for Wednesday and had mobilised their members, only to get the good news of the CMD’s release.
According to him, “the association expresses its gratitude over the release of the CMD, which forced us to shelf a protest planned to register our displeasure and concern over his continued stay in the kidnappers’ den.”
He charged the state government on improved security in the state, calling for the government to explore the option of community policing to stem the tide of insecurity.
He also called on doctors at Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital to sheath their sword and resume operations, noting that the doctors will not relent in discharging their services in the state.