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HURIWA seeks end to airstrikes in Imo State

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Emmanuel Onwubiko


As gov tasks church leaders on solution to insecurity

The Human Rights Writers Association Of Nigeria (HURIWA) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to end the military aggression in the South East with specific reference to the reported airstrikes in Imo State. 

HURIWA said the deployment of airpower against South East of Nigeria even when the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and the Eastern Security Network (ESN) had reportedly asked their members to disengage from their activities, constituted a crime of military aggression against innocent civilians.

The group stated that the airstrikes had created an atmosphere of fear and uncertainty in the entire Imo State with millions of people unsure of their safety any longer. 

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In a statement issued by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko and National Media Affairs Director, Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA said the continuous deployment of military force in the region would, rather than solve the security challenges in the South East of Nigeria and South-South, increase since most people will assume that President Buhari had declared war on the South East region. 

Citing attacks on police formations and operatives by unknown gunmen, as an instance of the increasing discontent in the zones, HURIWA, therefore, asked the government to stop the airstrikes before they lead to the loss of more innocent citizens, who now live in palpable fear and panic. 

Besides, HURIWA, which described the death of the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt.-Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru and other officers in a plane crash as tragic, tasked his successor to be mindful of the human rights of citizens recognised by law.

MEANWHILE, Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, has appealed to Church leaders in the country to tackle kidnaping, banditry, armed robbery, destruction of life and property, killing of security personnel and burning of security facilities in the state and entire country.

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He made the appeal at the weekend when the Prelate of the Methodist Church in Nigeria, Most Rev. Samuel Uche, visited him at the Government House, Owerri.

Uzodimma told the cleric and his entourage that the government could not work effectively without the Church and good-spirited groups and individuals, adding that Imo needed peace to thrive, having been known as a peaceful state over the years.

“The only way government can succeed is by partnering with the people and the Church, bearing in mind that the morality and good conduct come easily from the Church.

“It is only through unity, justice, equity, fairness and the people having a sense of citizenship that we can be proud Nigerians,” he said.

He argued that most of the killings and destructions were politically motivated, saying the development had brought indecent politics, acrimonious and violence, promising to use power apparatuses to change the narrative.

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