…Call for redeployment of compromised Police officers
By Mmaduabuchi Onwumelu
No fewer than 500 Awka indigenes, today, trooped out in the Capital City of Awka to protest what they described as mindless killing of their kith and kins by cultists and cultism, even as they accused some police officers of complicity, saying that they are aiding and abetting cultism and cult related activities in Awka the Anambra State Capital.
The protesters who moved from the popular Ogbugbankwa Park to Eke Awka roundabout from there to Igwebuike, Parkers Junction, Ukwu Orji, Area Command and then back to Ogbugbankwa were seen carrying placards with various inscriptions ranging from “Enough is Enough.” “Say No To Bribery and Corruption”, “We Are Not Happy”, “Our Children, Brothers, Husbands, Cousins, Relatives Are Being Killed On Daily Basis”, among others.
Speaking on behalf of the protesters, Chief Richard Onuorah stated that they would no longer condone the killings and maiming of their people, saying that they were crying their eyes out every day owing to cult related killings in the community, even as he called for the immediate removal of some personnel in the Police command.
He beckoned on the Police hierarchy to immediately remove the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-charge of State Criminal Investigation Department,SCID, and the Inspector working directly under him (names withheld).
The protesters were also seen carrying a mock coffin signaling the burial of the accused. They gave a 7-Day Ultimatum for police to do the needful..
He stated that the protesters were drawn from Ezinano made of twenty villages from Awka.
Corroborating Chief Onuorah, Comrade Obi Ochije Modilim noted that they were tired of burying their kinsmen and called for an end to what he described as incessant killings and maiming of their people.
“We want them to return the Blue Shield Operatives back to us. They should allow them to move freely. We are okay with them. Blue Shield Operatives are the people we know. They have been securing us. We can’t continue like that. We want them back”, he said.
For his part, the Chairman of Ezinano Community, Mr. Tochukwu Nwokoye said that they were embarking on a peaceful protest as a way of bringing to an end the unrest in Awka.
“It is our humble hope to have these killings stop forthwith. Our brothers are going down on a daily basis. We will not keep quiet and watch these heinous crimes and man’s inhumanity to man continue. It is time to put a stop to it. We are really in a very tough situation. Palpable fear everywhere. We cannot go out and come back in peace. We are really afraid. People are dying every day”, he submitted.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu stated that the police cannot descend so low as to compromise security in the state capital, even as he said that they would investigate the matter.
“Those they mentioned their names are very experienced officers. They have been around, especially the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-charge of SCID. These officers mentioned will be investigated. We cannot sweep the allegations under the carpet. We must do a thorough investigation.
“As you can see, the state is mourning the former Governor of Anambra State, Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinju . We would not want to heat up the state. We have asked the families of the deceased severally to come forward and prove their cases. The allegation that the Deputy Commissioner was recently transferred from Rivers State is false. He has been around. We know his antecedents, that’s not to say that we’ll not investigate all the allegations leveled against the police.
“Awka has been relatively peaceful. We are working with the community and they have been providing us with vital information which led to the arrest of a notorious killer and he’s currently helping us out with the investigation. He equally confessed to all manner of atrocious acts he has carried out in Awka. We are here to maintain law and order and not to cause chaos”, Ikenga concluded.
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