Ogbonna Casmir, Enugu
Arising from its emergency meeting ‘IMEOBI’ Igbo Highest decision making body has condemned the invasion and massacre of people of Nimbo in Uzo-Uwani council area of Enugu state, calling on governors of the southeast to establish local vigilante in all communities to give people protection since security agencies have failed.
According to the group in a meeting well attended high dignitaries like Mr. Peter Obi former governor of Anambra state, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezife among other stated that with well funded local vigilante, the security of our communities is assured like this kind of attack.
They Igbo highest decision making body however, called on Enugu state government and federal government to ensure that a thorough investigation is carried with a view to ensuring that those responsible for the lapses are made to account and punished for their action.
In a communiqué read by Prof. Paul Modum, the Imeobi however opposed the grazing bill before the national assembly.
“That Imeobi endorses and reaffirms the positions of Ohanaeze on the proposed grazing bill at the national assembly. This bill is rejected by Ohanaeze. Ohanaeze maintained that cattle rearing are private business and therefore should not be used to infringe on the rights of individuals and communities.
“That Emeobi mandate Ohanaeze leadership to take all necessary action to ensure that such incidents never again occur in any other part of southeast and indeed in all part of Igboland.”
Meanwhile to find a lasting solution to the increasing spate of killings across the country allegedly masterminded by Fulani Herdsmen, the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu said the Senate will this week hold public hearing on the lingering issue.
According to the Public hearing is necessitated by last week’s invasion of Ukpabi Nimbo community in Uzo-Uwani council of Enugu state by the herders wherein scores of people were killed and properties destroyed.
Ekweremadu who made the disclosure when he led members of the National Assembly from Enugu state to the troubled community for an on the spot assessment of the situation noted that the Federal lawmakers were committed to finding a lasting solution to the activities of the herders across the community.
Ekweremadu who was accompanied on the visit by Senator representing Enugu North senatorial zone, Chuka Utazi as well as members of the House of Representatives including, Dr Chukwuemeka Ujam (Nkanu East/Nkanu West), Dennis Agbo (Igboeze North/Udenu), Pat Asadu (Nsukka/Igboeze South), Toby Okechukwu (Aninri/Awgu/Oji-River) and Dennis Amadi (Udi/Ezeagu) described the damage done to the community as devastating.
The Deputy Senate President, who equally visited the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Enugu, where some of the injured are receiving treatment, expressed shock over the number of deaths recorded during the attack.
He announced the donation of a transformer to the community, even as he assured them that “this will bring an end to what herdsmen are doing in Nigeria; we shall do our best to ensure that it doesn’t happen again, whether here or elsewhere.
“NEMA will also visit here tomorrow with relief material. In the meantime, the National Assembly caucus in our state is donating the sum of N2 million naira to you to help you start the rebuilding process. We are going to ensure that roads here are given clear attention; after four years, the story of Uzo-Uwani will change. I will also give you a transformer within the next three to four days”, he promised.
Also, both Hon. Patrick Asadu and Hon. Dennis Agbo representing Nsukka/Igbo-Eze South and Igbo-Eze North/Udenu federal constituencies, respectively, declared that “enough is enough”, maintaining that the attack on Nimbo would not be taken for granted.
“They have been doing this and going free but this attack on Nimbo will be the last. The people doing this are not just cattle rearers; they are terrorists, Boko Haram elements; we are not going to take it”, Asadu declared.
Earlier the Parish Priest of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Nimbo, the Rev. Fr. Okeke Obetta, had told the delegation how some of the herdsmen numbering over 50 descended on the Church and vandalized it after several attempts to set it ablaze failed
Also, the traditional ruler of Nimbo community, Igwe John Akor made a passionate appeal to the federal government to find ways of addressing the security challenge facing his people, noting that the continued loss of lives and property in the hands of the herdsmen would no longer be condoned.