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Stakeholders task South East governors on growing insecurity

By Lawrence Njoku, Enugu and Ernest Nzor, Abuja Nigeria
16 January 2023   |   4:04 am
A South East stakeholders meeting, at the weekend, asked governors to tackle insecurity in the region if they want residents to fully participate in next month’s general elections

[FILES] INEC Enugu office attacked

•Stop killings or risks anarchy, HURIWA tells governors
•Accuses soldiers in Imo of arbitrary arrest, extortion of citizens

A South East stakeholders meeting, at the weekend, asked governors to tackle insecurity in the region if they want residents to fully participate in next month’s general elections

Participants at the meeting, held in Enugu, lamented growing violence, killings, abductions among others, saying the development could force voters to boycott the elections if serious steps are not taken to stem the tide.

The meeting tagged, ‘South East Stakeholder’s Meeting in Preparations Towards the 2023 General Elections,’ and organised by an election observer group, the Centre for Transparency Advocacy (CTA), insisted that the attitude of governors towards growing insecurity in the region leaves no confidence in the masses.

MEANWHILE, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA), yesterday, called on Imo State Government and other South East governors to restore governance, stability and security in the region or risk total collapse of apparatuses of governance and manifestations of anarchy, doom and disorder.

The rights group also criticised heads of security agencies in parts of the South East for failing to put measures in place to check persistent upsurge in coordinated violence and terrorism in the region by non-state actors.

HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement, said report shows that soldiers in internal security operations are fond of arresting villagers and extorting huge cash from them as bail fees.

HURIWA wondered why security agencies, such as the police, the Department of State Services (DSS), the Army, Civil Defence, amongst others, have failed to beef up security around Akokwa Ama-Edward, Arondizuogu-Okigwe federal road, which have become the epicentre of daredevil terrorist attacks, including the assassination attempt on the Spokesman of the Coalition of United Political Parties(CUPP) Ikenga Ugochinyere, in Akokwa.

HURIWA, therefore, called on the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya, to investigate these damaging allegations of miscarriages of justice, irregular, arbitrary arrests, detention and extortion of villagers of Imo State by soldiers carrying out internal security operations.

HURIWA noted that these criminal tendencies of few soldiers are damaging civil and military relationship, which makes it difficult for state of insecurity in the region to be tackled, and for armed attackers to be subdued and decimated.