Ebonyi gov’s bid to stop protest stirs controversy, Obiano in shuttle diplomacy
FACTS emerging from Ebonyi State Governor Dave Umahi’s purported statement that there were no Boko Haram prisoners in the South East show that it may have being a ploy to stem the wave of protests that greeted the news.
Governor Umahi was reported to have told the organizers of the protest that it was no longer necessary since the unwelcome prisoners have already been moved out.
As the heat was turned on and probably when he realized that the game was up, he quickly issued a rebuttal, saying that he never told anyone the convicts have been moved out of Anambra.
A visit to the prisons by our correspondent late Friday confirmed that the Boko Haram convicts were very much around. Both the prison authorities, Ezinifite natives on whose soil the prison stands confirm that they were still there.
President General of the community, Nze Eloka Maduka, the traditional ruler-Igwe Bob Orji and other leaders from the Aguata Council also said they were still there.
A look at Anambra State, however, reveals that Governor Willie Obiano is deep in shuttle diplomacy between Awka and Abuja trying to get the Boko Haram insurgents out of the state. He was reported at pains more because Anambra state has lost the highest number of her indigenes in the various attacks by the insurgents in Northern Nigeria more than any other state in Nigeria.
It was therefore understandable why the governor could no longer sleep with two eyes closed. No wonder Anambra state has witnessed more protests, which has become a daily affair by different professional groups, associations and communities in all parts and markets to send a clear message to the All Progressives Congress (APC) led Federal Government that in a democratic setting, wishes of the people should prevail for peace to reign.
Chief Tagbo Onwuegbusi, Chairman of All Communities’ Leaders of Thought and Dr. Caslon Bieluokwu, the international President of Elders Council of Igboland, in an interview shortly after their protest march at Ezinifite yesterday told newsmen that the two bodies were compiling details of the losses by Anambra indigenes in the hands of Boko Haram since 2008, with the intention of making the details available to President Muhammadu Buhari.