However, an Amotekun officer cannot be sued for whatever he does in the course of duty but only what he does in his personal capacity.
This is according to the Ekiti State Security Network Agency Bill 2020 which has been submitted to the Ekiti State House of Assembly.
Other South-West governors have submitted similar bills to their respective houses of assembly.
Section 36 of the bill states, “Any person who wilfully hinders, delays, obstructs or assaults a member of the Ekiti State Amotekun Corps in the course of the exercise of his lawful duties under this law shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of one month or to a fine not exceeding two hundred and fifty thousand naira only (N250,000.00) or to both such fine and imprisonment.”
The bill further states that the security organisation must be headed by a retired law enforcement agent who is not lower than the rank of Major or its equivalent in any other security agency.
Section 14 reads in part, “There shall be appointed by the governor, a corps commander for the agency, who shall be a retired law enforcement officer or military officer not below the rank of a major or its equivalent in other security services.
“The corps commander shall be a person with at least 10 years cognate experience in security matters; (b) be responsible for the day-to-day running of the affairs of the Ekiti State Amotekun Corps and implementation of the decisions of the board; (c) hold meetings with his counterparts in other states, particularly Ogun, Lagos, Ondo, Osun and Oyo states on a quarterly basis or as may be collectively determined by the corps commanders in those dates.”
The bill also provides for the establishment of an Amotekun board which is expected to meet not less than four times a year.
The bill will comprise the Commissioner of Police in the state and representatives of other military representatives.
Section 6 reads in part:-
“There is established for the agency a governing board (referred to in this law as the board).
The board shall comprise: a chairman, who shall be a person of proven integrity with experience in security matters and shall be a retired law enforcement or military officer not below the rank of a Major or its equivalent in the other security services; the commissioner of police in the state or his/her representative; one member representing the different services of the Armed Forces of Nigeria operating in the state; the state commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps in the state or his/her representative; the Executive Secretary, Ekiti State Security Trust Fund or his/her representative; one representative each of the Community Development Associations drawn from the three senatorial zones the state; the Chairman, Ekiti State Council of Traditional Rulers or his representative; the Ekiti State Amotekun Corps Commander.”
Meanwhile, the Ekiti State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Wale Fapohunda, on Tuesday called for comments from members of the public on the bill for the enabling law for the establishment of Amotekun corps.
Fapohunda said the state Ministry of Justice posted the bill on its website on Monday to enable Ekiti residents and other stakeholders to view it and make comments.
The AG said “Deadline for the submission of comments is Wednesday, 12 February, 2020, at midnight.
The bill, which the AG presented to the state governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, on Monday, will be discussed at the State Executive Council on Wednesday (today).
The ministry stated that Amotekun Corps would also “ensure that all persons travelling along the highways, major roads, remote areas, are free to participate in their normal social and economic life without hindrance” and as well “assist the police to carry out any other lawful activity for maintaining law and order in the state”.
However, the Osun State House of Assembly says it has not officially received the bill for Amotekun.
The Speaker, Timothy Owoeye, said this on Tuesday
Speaking through his Press Secretary, Kunle Alabi, Owoeye said the parliament was however expecting the bill “any moment from now.”