Dangerous Alarms in Ebonyi LGA, Police Warn Against Delaying Reports on Security Matters
By Victor Nwegede
Ebonyi State Police Command has warned individuals especially the political officeholders against unnecessary delay of reports that are capable of putting lives of people in a dangerous situation in any part of the state.
The Command through the Police Public Relations Officer,Mrs Loveth Odah gave this warning while responding to a robbery report that took place in Ekebeligwe Ishieke in Mbeke Development Centre of Ebonyi local government area in the state.
The reports from the hinterlands of Ebonyi Local Government Area alleged that there were dangerous alarms following criminal activities recorded in the area even this time, Covid-19 pandemic situation is worsening the people’s means of livelihood.
Landslide sources have uncovered dead scores and broad day robberies on gunpoints among other criminal activities witnessed in the area.
Yet, there were still stories heralded by the indigenes and as well the residents relatively on child-trafficking, murder, land disputes, raping, burglaries, thefts, tussles rising from the village and community leadership systems and other unlawful activities due to alleged political officeholders’ differences within the area.
A commercial motorcyclist who plied along the popular Nwiboko Obodo road in the area was gathered robbed of his motorcycle last Saturday after gunshots which inflicted serious injuries on his body at the black spots of the road precisely in Ekebeligwe Ishieke in Mbeke Development Centre of Ebonyi Council Area in the state.
Narrating the incident, the village head, Chief Lazarus Nwoyibe alongside the Village Youth President, Comrade Emmanuel Nwebonyi and many other villagers confirmed the incident actually took place in the area.
The village head said, it was through his intervention with the village people, the victim, Mr. Joseph Nwibo from Odomoke Ishieke was rushed to a hospital after reporting the incident to the nearest police station immediately the information reached them.
He further stated that the scene of the incident has become a dangerous spot for the community and the road users especially the motorcycle operators whom he said, had the same ugly experience while crossing the area.
On his part, Mbeke Ward PDP Chairman, Prince Agbo Iteshi disclosed that the unknown hoodlums had used the same mechanism to rob three persons of their motorcycles but through the intervention of the villagers, one was rescued as he also unveiled, the electric transformer located at the same spot was burgled by unknown criminals, keeping the part of the community without electricity till date.
Many people from the area regretted that criminal elements have decided to drag the image of the community to the mud and pledged to speed up investigations with their local vigilante group to uncover the pepertrators as they insisted that anybody caught in such act would not escape their anger, pointing that a jungle justice might be their next option to apply in order to derail the existence of the hoodlums in their axis; warning every criminals and their associates to stay clear from their areas.
The people also through the Mbeke Ward Councillor, Henry Chidi Mbam, Prince Cyprain Akputa and other stakeholders from the area extolled the Government of Governor David Nweze Umahi, saying the election of the governor has almost changed the bad experiences their people used to encounter in the area due to a poor road network.
The community people and those plying the so called Nwiboko Obodo road equally called Governor Umahi to help them by completing the road to Benue State as he promised, and also expressed optimism that, if the asphalting of the road is completed, the crime rates would reduce, hinted that, this would make security agents to easily access the road when called for an urgent intervention.
It could be recalled that, these were exactly the narrations of Ngbona and Edomie Ishieke people living by the same road sides, where such hoodlums had badly dealt with those plying the route as a result of its deplorable condition before Governor Umahi’s Government began his road infrastructural intervention in the area leading to the asphalting of the road to Ochakpe-ephu junction in Ekebeligwe Ishieke, very close to the St. Dorathy Catholic Church, Holy Family Parish in the village, the place the ugly incident began resurfacing due to the current bad order of the road.
It was also gathered that the wooden bridge known as Ogbogbo Nwapha Bridge which serves as the only linkage between Egwudinagu Ishieke in Ebonyi Development Centre and Ekebeligwe Ishieke in Mbeke Development Centre along the same road has now turned to a dead trap to the users. This bridge was reported to have led to the dead of over 20 persons injecting fears in the road users and the people living within the area when rainning season draws close.
The people noted that, the bridge has not been constructed till date, adding that the workers deployed to the area are no longer seen working at the site after constructing the road across the bridge since last year. Some people who expected that work would have commenced on the bridge before now, however called the state Governor and other political stakeholders especially those from the area to intervene while expressing fear on the situation of the bridge should it got totally broken down because it was on their only major road.
An avalanche of our sources from different parts of the area also narrated their ordeals rising from the cases of land disputes, child-trafficking, rape, murder, theft/robbery activities, community and village leadership tussles, among others, stressing these situations had kept some people from their area to have continued being on the run to secure their lives while those intercepted by the security agents were said, still facing the wraths of law in the prison custody.
In an attempt to confirm the reports, the Police Spokesperson, Mrs. Loveth Odah, warned the stakeholders from the area against delaying reports which are capable of endangering the lives of people in the society.
Hear her, “if actually things like that are happening, we have a serious case in Ishieke. The commissioner of police has actually mourned and commiserated with the family of a deceased girl from Ishieke in Ebonyi Local Government Area. A girl of 19 years old, one Chinyere Unah from Ugbona Ishieke precisely was reported to have left her house to make her hair in Obobo Ishieke and she was not seen back, that was on the 2nd of May, 2020. On 7th May, 2020, she was reported that, the mother went to look for animal feeds in a nearby bush to her home, and then unfortunately to the woman, she perceived an offensive odour and she traced the odour and beheld, it was her own daughter. And the daughter was founded dead, decomposing with her two feet, without her flesh connecting the laps, the two laps were chopped off. So, this is a report we have at Ishieke. I spoke on it when I was on the TV. I was telling them that actually it was not easy on total lockdown. But it is not good for somebody to move around in the odd time. During the lockdown from 7am to 7pm, I was happy. Something like these were not heard but so many were affected especially those ones who sell fruits. And those ones who do their businesses in the evening time were not happy with it. But I was happy because these kinds of problems were not rampant. If you could remember this lockdown was almost two weeks, and during that time, nobody was reporting a case of stealing, robbery, because as soon as it is 7pm if you come to the street of Abakaliki, it was so empty and lonely. Infact, if you were a rober, you can’t see anyone to rob from, and if you are a rober you can’t see a place to go.
“It is because the Governor has reminded the people he wants to please them, he removed this ban and at the end of the day, we are suffering. People are actually angry, so many people are now feeling hungry. I was holding a dustbin at my hand, my children put it in my car when I was leaving the house, as I was coming back around 7:30 to 8pm, immediately I dropped to dispose the dustbin, two men shouted, ‘give me the bag!’ I have to give it to them because my own son will always prepare dustbin as if it is goods, he will tie it with a leather. And that’s why they snatched the bag from me.
“The lockdown and the Coronavirus have affected many people. I don’t know how you will understand that many people are hungry. Many people are hungry. Base on this, people should learn to go home on time and parents have to take note of the level the men-underworld are operating these days in their areas by cautioning their children.
“As her two laps were all chopped off, what are they going to use her body parts for, it’s a case of ritual. Because she is decomposed, she has a very big wound between her laps, stomach and chest. Maybe her vital organs might have been removed from her body but since her corpse has already decomposed, all that happened to her corpse you will not know. People should learn how to keep their children with them. Governments said lockdown. Lockdown means stay at home. Apart from the people on the essential duties, the press can go up and down to know and updates in the news in town. And the police will go to work, and if you are mother or father, you should go and look for what you will eat with your children now because Ebonyi State is not totally lockdown. The children should remain at home while parents should go out and look for what to eat. Not when parents leave the home, their children will leave as well. Parents have to take care of their children at this time. Some parents have come here to report about their missing children at this moment. I wonder why should they leave their children now lockdown is the order of the day. People should learn how to prepare their children, because an child should not allowed to go to an isolated place without a care of adult. I think it is not only police responsibility, your personal activities should also be your own responsibility too. The entire security of life and property is a collective responsibility. You do your own part while I play my own part too. I use to tell people that your personal security of your house should first be your mandate. How can people go to bed without locking the door. Those criminals have already learned to use packs, they will just go to market and buy packs, then construct a longer stick on it. They throw it through your protector, because your window is of course opened and packed all your phones on top of the table. It had happened every now and then. The victims would wondering how these criminals managed to pack their phones till a particular day one woman saw them and we arrrested someone who confessed that was what other people in these town used to do”.
She thus, advised everybody to be security conscious while keeping strictly the directives given by the Government in the fight against the spread of Covid-19 pandemic in the state as she observed that many have not taken seriously the social restriction order, pointing that ‘the terrible incident in Ishieke is uncalled for’ and cautioned people to never allow themselves to fall prey to the trials of this moment.
“People should not allowed themselves to fall prey of this magic and I don’t know if it is the magic that tells people to go out in the midnight, and when you come back you will not see even where to match on, you now become their victims. Report the matter to police immediately because what we are learning how to do now is if you report the matter, and something like that is happening, the political leader in that place will actually be held responsible including the traditional ruler. They should report to police when it is not out of hand yet. And if there is lost of life in that place, they will not even be happy because His Excellency will not spare anybody. We expect everybody to report to the police when incident like that occurs in their areas and that’s why we are here”, she advised.