Metro & Crime

S’East govs raise the alarm over killings, kidnappings

…allege plot to cause panic, disunity

South-East governors, yesterday, raised the alarm over rising insecurity in the region. The governors specifically expressed concerns over killings and kidnappings, which occurred in the last few days in the zone.

In a communique issued after their virtual meeting read to journalists by Chairman of the South-East Governors Forum and Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief Dave Umahi, the governors recalled that two days ago, two policemen were killed in Imo State with their rifles stolen by bandits. Umahi, who disclosed that all the five South-East governors attended the virtual meeting, further revealed that there was a kidnap case along Enugu and Ebonyi border with the rescue of the victim through divine intervention.

“We are very much worried. It is not those that are not from South-East that are doing it, it is our own people that are doing it. They want to cause panic, they want to cause disunity in this country.

We want the leaders of South-East to rise above political sentiments to speak out and to condemn this act because should the security people act, the cry will go everywhere,” he said. The governors condemned a viral video from Ebonyi State that claimed that herdsmen residing in the state were being attacked and chased out of the state by their host communities, describing the video as falsehood and attempt to cause panic and disunity in the country.

“We are so much worried on the killings and kidnappings that are going on by our people in South-East; killing our own people and then killing security agencies and the situation is being heightened by the activities of very desperate politicians. There are so many desperate politicians in all the political parties that are so desperate for power and they have aligned with some bandits in South-East to destabilise the nation.

“For instance, two days ago, in Ebonyi State, a Fulani man decided to move to Taraba State and retain some of the family members in Ebonyi. Unfortunately, a politician, as we learnt, put a voice and said that Igbo are chasing away the herdsmen from Ebonyi State. Such a video went very wide and was causing panic in other parts of the country and that is very much uncalled for. “The governors condemn this and we will want the leaders of South-East to rise up to speak against this kind of attitude and against messages that tend to divide us and put our people in danger outside South- East. We want them to do this, because the security agencies as they have informed us, will not continue to fold their hands while they are being killed and their rifles collected from them,” Umahi said. The Ebonyi State governor said that governors of the zone will do everything possible to ensure that everybody residing in the South-East, irrespective of ethnic affiliations, were protected. Umahi said the governors have expanded security committee in the zone to tighten security. “We will do everything possible as governors of South-East to ensure that all our people are protected; the security agencies and all the people from other regions that are living with us. We have agreed that the South- East security committee will be expanded. We have agreed that this year we are going to have a common patrol. Our vehicles are going to be the same, the uniform will be the same and we will do this for our vigilante and we will continue to work with the people of South-East to give them greater protection,” the governor said.

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