Wike offers N50m for arrest of IPOB member, Mgbere
• Reiterates Ban On IPOB’s Activities In Rivers
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has placed N50m-bounty for the arrest of one Stanley Mgbere, for allegedly leading members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to cause violence and destructions of properties in Oyigbo Local Government Area of the state, last Wednesday.
The governor made the declaration in a statewide broadcast last Friday in Port Harcourt. Wike reiterated the ban on IPOB’s activities in the state, in line with the Federal Government’s proscription order.
He said no form of procession or agitation by the group or any of its affiliates would be allowed in the state in future. Wike said: “Mr. Stanley Mgbere is hereby declared wanted for leading members of the banned IPOB to cause the recent violence and destruction of lives and property in Oyigbo Local Government Area. And a ransom of N50m will be given to any person with useful information that would lead to his arrest and prosecution.”
He explained that the state government reached the conclusion, having observed that activities of the banned IPOB are not just dangerous to lives and property, but also constitute clear and present threat to the existential interest and aspirations of Rivers State and its people.
“Security agencies are hereby directed to stop any form of procession or agitation by IPOB in Rivers State or any part thereof, arrest and prosecute any person or group that identifies with the membership or activities of IPOB in the state. Government will issue an executive order to strengthen and ensure the effective enforcement of these measures,” he said.
He disclosed that he would meet with leaders of youth groups and community development committees in the state tomorrow (Monday) to take holistic measures to counter and stop IPOB’s activities in the state.
He recalled that since IPOB was classified as a terrorist organisation by the Federal High Court and subsequently proscribed in September 2017 by the Federal Government, the group has carried out intermittent processions in parts of Rivers State, especially in Oyigbo and some suburbs in Port Harcourt Local Government Areas.
He said IPOB’s aim had been to disturb the peace by unleashing violence and destruction on lives and property at will.He explained that the state government had severally pleaded, warned and even advised IPOB members to discontinue their insurrectional actions in the state to no avail. Instead, IPOB unleashed another orgy of violence and destruction on Oyigbo and some parts of Port Harcourt City Local Government Area on October 21, 2020.
“I wish to appeal to the people of Oyigbo Local Government Area to remain calm and not take the law into their hands, despite the intense provocation, as government has the capacity to deal with the challenge and ensure safety of lives and property…” he said.