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End violence, your voices have been heard, ASHIA boss tells youths

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• Steer clear of Onitsha property, infrastructure, community leader warns hoodlums

Executive Secretary of the Anambra State Health Insurance Agency (ASHIA), Dr. Simeon Onyemaechi, has pleaded with youths to stop the violent protests, saying their voices have been heard. 

Onyemaechi made the appeal while addressing journalists in Awka, as normalcy returned to all parts of Anambra State, adding: “I support peaceful protests, but for such protests to take a violent turn and become destructive is unacceptable.

“Destruction of public and private property is condemnable. The best we can do is to hold on to the hard work, diligence and dedication to duty for which the Igbo is known.’’

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He said youths protested peacefully across the state making various demands to which Governor Willie Obiano had addressed by taking some crucial decisions and followed them through.

Onyemaechi said he was encouraged at the speed with which the governor had been fulfilling his promises to the protesters including disengagement of James Nwafor, visiting all the disbanded SARS formations in the state and releasing those unjustly held in its facilities.

He noted that the state government also set up a Judicial Panel of Enquiry and sought memoranda from the aggrieved youths.
The government also set aside N200m for compensation of victims of SARS and police brutality, which he said, has been captured in the 2021 budget according to the governor.

MEANWHILE, President-General of Onitsha Improvement Union (OIU), Chike Ekweogwu, has cautioned hoodlums to keep away from the Onitsha, as all the infrastructure here were largely build by state, community and individual efforts.

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He explained that Onitsha was one city that has been offering accomodation and business opportunities to millions of Igbo and other ethnic nationalities.

Ekweogwu said this after a peaceful march round parts of the city by youths of Onitsha indigenous community having exchanged views with Anambra State information officers resident in the town.

The peaceful march took off from the Ime Obi to Zik’s House through the Round About to the Main Market through Old Cemetery Road and back to Ime Obi.

He affirmed that the peaceful youth march was carried out to send a strong message to all residents with the directive of the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, that they were unhappy over the mayhem caused by hoodlums following the #EndSARS protests.

“We went round to let people know that the destruction of property is not a solution to the problems we are facing in Nigeria,” he said.

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In this article:
ASHIASimeon Onyemaechi
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