There is no doubt that Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu State has become notorious for politically motivated violence, kidnapping, arsons, banditry, assassinations and other forms of criminal activities in recent times.
In spite of the efforts of the state government to end sponsored acts of violence in the area by recruiting 1700 Forest Guards personnel, 5200 Neighbourhood Watch personnel, Sending of Anti-Kidnapping Bill to the State House of Assemble for approval, purchasing of 260 security vehicles and another 260 operational motorcycles with modern communication equipments for all the 260 Electoral Wards of the state as well as the concluded arrangements for the establishment of the Ministry of Security Affairs in Enugu State, sponsorship of what is now known as political terrorism in Awgu Local Government Area has continued with the satanic intent of sabotaging efforts of the state government in the area.
For Instance, since the sudden outbreak of insecurity started in the area, a Senator and other political leaders from that zone have never condemned the violence nor lend hands of support to the people of the area. Instead, it has been alleged that they are using their resources to sponsor ethic profiling or negative media publicity against the Fulani herdsmen who have lived in the area for years without having problem with their host community.
Before I continue, let me define what political terrorism is all about.
Political terrorism is the calculated use of unlawful violence or threat of unlawful violence to inculcate fear intended to coerce or intimidate the government or society in pursuit of goals that are political.
In otherwords, it is the use of violence against innocent civilians in pursuit of political objectives.
Because of political terrorism in Awgu, a Reverend Father of the Roman Catholic Church, Fr. Paul Offu was killed. A permanent Secretary of the Enugu State Ministry of Land, Mr. Augustine Ude was kidnapped. A traditional ruler of Agbogugu kingdom and his wife were kidnapped and most recently, the National Youth Leader of the Peoples Democratic Party, Hon. Sunday Ude-Okoye was kidnapped.
All has since been released because of the effectiveness of the state government apparatus as well as security agencies in the state.
The question is, how long must the feverish bird tremble in silence before their keeper?
Enugu State is peaceful and secure and it is still like that, but because of political terrorism in Awgu Local Government, the entire state is been portrayed in bad light.
Therefore, there is an urgent need for the declaration of a State of Emergency in Awgu Local Government by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
The power to declare a State of Emergency can both be exercised by the President and the Governor of the affected state.
For Instance, Section 305 subsection 3 (c) and (d) of the 1999 Constitution as amended states that ”The President shall have power to issue a proclamation of a state of emergency only when:
(c) ‘There is actual breakdown of public order and public safety in the Federation or any part thereof to such extent as to require extraordinary measure to restore peace and security.’
(d) ‘There is a clear and present danger of an actual breakdown of public order or public safety in the Federation or any part thereof requiring extraordinary measures to avert such danger.’
While subsection (4) which bestows the power to declare a state of emergency on the state governor reads: ”The Governor of a State may, with the sanction of a resolution supported by two-thirds majority of the House of Assembly request the President to issue a proclamation of a state of emergency in the state when there is in existence within the state any of the situations specified in subsection 3(c), (d) and (e) of this section and such situation does not extend beyond the boundaries of the state.”
Accordingly, because of the ongoing acts of sabotage against the state government and it’s people as well as the sponsorship of political terrorism in Awgu, it has become imperative for the Governor of Enugu State, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to declare a State of Emergency in Awgu Local Government Area of the state.
In conclusion, despite the sponsorship of political terrorism in Awgu, Enugu as a state is still very peaceful, safe and secure because it is solidly in the Hands of God.
Mr. Brown Justice, an Investigative Journalist writes from Nenwe in Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu State.