Nigeria: I’ll Take Bold Steps to End Insecurity in South-East – Soludo

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Anambra State has been in news for bad reasons following the siege on some communities in Ihiala and Nnewi South Local Government Areas of the state, by gunmen who have been making life bearable for the people of the area.

In communities like Lilu and Orsumoghu, the indigenes were said to have fled their homes following the activities of these hoodlums who claim to be members of the Indigenous People of Biafra.

They have also taken over the once busy Ukpor-Orsumoghu-Lilu-Azia-Ihiala road, unleashing all manner of terror, including killing, maiming, kidnapping for ransom, among others. This has made the people, including roads users abandon the road as no one who passes the road has any good story to tell.

These evil activities have been linked to the break-away IPOB who would open their victims that their leader is in detention that they have resorted to kidnapping to raise money to sustain their activities, a position different from what the recognized spokesman of IPOB, Emma Powerful and the mainstream IPOB hold.

However, worried by the level of insecurity created in the state by these hoodlums, the new Anambra State Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo has expressed readiness to tackle it and give the people of the State some sense of security to enable them to carry on their daily activities in a secured environment.

Soludo, in his inauguration speech, had urged any group that claims it is not part of the senseless killings and kidnappings in the South East to step out and show leadership by joining hands to do something about the senseless killings and disruption of economic activities in the South East region.

According to Soludo: “To IPOB/ESN, the Movement for the Actualization of Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, as well as the desperate armed groups in the forests, it is time to interrogate both the purpose and means of your campaign.

“To the politicians playing politics with the insecurity, you are riding a tiger. The current trajectory is a road to desolation. Let us get around the table and talk. Let the elite in the closet come out, and let is debate our future and forge a consensus.

“The conspiracy of silence by the elite and some community leaders must end. If you see something, say or do something! Securing Igbo land and Nigeria must be our collective responsibility. Let those in the forests come out, surrender their guns and let us work together to rehabilitate and empower you to contribute positively to the peace and prosperity of our homeland”.

Frowning at weekly Monday sit-at-home which had since been hijacked hoodlums from IPOB, the governor lamented that “a significant part of our state economy is powered by artisans, Keke drivers, vulcanizers, hairdressers, cart pushers, petty traders, bricklayers, women frying Akara, and all those who depend upon daily toil and sweat to feed their families. Every day, there is a sit-at-home, these poor masses lose an estimated N19.6 billion in Anambra alone.”

“Due to the protracted breakdown of law and order, businesses are relocating outside Igbo land, with growing unemployment, and traders who used to come to shop in Onitsha, Aba etc are going elsewhere. Who is losing? By forcing our children, the future of Igbo land, to stay at home instead of being in school, while even the critically sick people, including pregnant women, cannot go to the hospital, we harm our future.

“I hereby challenge any of the disparate groups that claim that it is not part of the senseless killings and kidnappings to step out and show leadership by joining hands with us to dO something about it.

If you love our homeland, there is no place for bloodshed. Our Lord Jesus Christ admonished in Matthew 26: 52: “Put your sword back in its sheath, for all who live by the sword will die by the sword”.

In the traditional religion, the land places a curse upon those who spill the blood of the innocent.

“For me, this issue is personal and emotional. My mother died during the civil war; our last born, Chukwuemeka died during the war; my father bore a bullet inside him for years; my elder brother – at 16, was in the ‘Boys Company’. At 8, I became the “man of the house”, with all the men at the war front. My uncles, cousins, etc, died during the war.

“This is 2022, and there are certainly far better ways to protest than shedding the blood of the innocent or resorting to criminality.

“That is why I call on all of us today to join hands with me to execute the real agenda, a livable and prosperous homeland of opportunities and jobs for our youth while maximizing the benefits of a united Nigeria/Africa.