Bleeding South East

The South East has continued to bleed profusely from kidnappings.


Monday, May 22, 2023 at 08:10 PM

Written by Editorial Board

The South East has continued to bleed profusely from kidnappings, killings and other violent acts by the infamous "unknown gunmen". It has become a daily occurrence mostly in Imo and Anambra States. There is no longer sanctity of human lives. More worrisome is the fact that there is no solution in sight. 

Recently, two soldiers were killed at an unknown location in Imo State. The victims, Master Warrant Officer, Linus Audu, and his wife, an Army Private, Gloria Matthew were reportedly beheaded after being shot dead by gunmen. Their corpses was thereafter dismembered by the hoodlums who sent the gory image of their heads on various social media platforms. 

Also recently, the same unknown gunmen 

invaded a police checkpoint in Imo State and opened fire on three officers, killing an Assistant Superintendent of Police, Ukam Efut who had just two years to retire from service. It was reported that his killers severed and went away with his genitalia. 

While Nigerians were yet to come out of the shock of the barbaric and dastardly acts, a serving lawmaker in the Anambra State House of Assembly, Okechukwu Okoye, was kidnapped by gunmen who later killed him. His headless body was found Nnobi area of the state. 

Hon. Okoye, an indigene of Isuofia, the same community as Governor Charles Soludo, was until his death the lawmaker representing Aguata II constituency in the Anambra state house of assembly. His campaign director, Cyril Chiegboka, who was kidnapped alongside him, was also killed by the gunmen. 

Soludo who condemned the killing, described it as “heartless and barbaric", assuring that the perpetrators will be caught and dealt with. He consequently placed a N10 million reward for anyone or group that will avail valuable information that will lead to the immediate arrest of the culprits. 

The governor's statement could pass for the usual rhetoric. Similar statements from leaders of the South East, especially the governors have not yielded any result. This has emboldened the gunmen to continue their rein of terror on a once peaceful region. It is saddening that Igbo leaders are silent and watching the complete annihilation of their area. The South East that used to be a beehive of economic activities and known for its huge hospitality has become a shadow of itself. 

But the recent method of killing and beheading of victims should be a cause for concern. It should be a wake up call and also instigate measures to combat the violent attacks in the South-East. Leaders of the region must put aside their political differences for the good of their people and land. Everything must be done to return the place to its bubbling status. Law enforcement agents should be equipped and supported to end the senseless and mindless butchery in the region.

Communities leaders should help security agents in gathering intelligence. Unlike they have made us to believe, the gunmen are not unknown, neither are they ghosts nor foreigners. They are members of the South-East community; so they should be fish out for prosecution so that peace can return there. 

The federal government must also come clean to restore sanity in the area. If the current tactics to secure the zone from terror attacks is not yielding the desired result, they should have a new approach and sincerely end the carnage. Enough of the bleeding.

Edited By: fadil

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