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Fear grips residents as insecurity heightens in Owerri zone

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Imo State

The insecurity situation in Imo State is currently on the upswing, as unknown gunmen and kidnappers have taken over most parts of the state. The peaceful Owerri Senatorial district is fastly becoming the latest flashpoint.

Orlu and Okigwe zones have experienced severe insecurity which has resulted in at least a thousand murders and the destruction of property worth hundreds of millions of naira since the inception of Senator Hope Uzodinma’s administration three years ago.

Owerri zone, the only zone out of the three that the gunmen spared from their attacks, killings, kidnappings, and in some cases arson, is gradually losing its revered status as the most peaceful part of the state. It has fastly turned into a flash point in the past three months.

Within the last 3 months, Ngor Okpala, one of the worst hit, has experienced three fatal gunmen attacks. The first occurred in the final week of March when gunmen ambushed members of the civil defence corps who were on patrol along the constantly busy Orishueze-Eche Road, killing three people instantaneously and leaving two more seriously injured.

Five police officers were also brutally murdered on the 21st of April 2023 at Okpala junction axis in the Ngor-Okpala council area after they entered a canteen on the Owerri-Aba Express Road by gunmen said to have been following the officers. Sadly, the canteen’s owners, a husband and wife, were not spared by the hoodlums; they died alongside the security operatives.

Barely one month after, precisely, last Saturday, gunmen again ambushed and killed two policemen and injured one at a checkpoint at Okpala Junction in the Ngor Okpala Local Government Area of the State.

The recent attack caused panic and unrest in so many communities in the areas, as people continued to complain about the incessant attacks. A resident of Umuhu community, in Ngor-Okpala LGA, Chief Chibuzo Nwachukwu, informed DAILY POST that people no longer slept with their eyes closed in the area. Tension is present everywhere,” he said.

According to him, “The hub had been Orlu where destruction of life and property resulted from a confrontation between the gunmen who started by attacking police stations and security personnel, but it appears the focus has now turned to Owerri Zone, where there has been a spate of gun violence over the past three months by the killing squad.

“For now, we don’t feel secure, as we are scared and always on high alert and lock our doors and gates as early as 7 pm to avoid uninvited guests.

“I earnestly implore the security services to investigate this situation as soon as possible to identify the perpetrators of this heinous crime and apprehend them.”

Findings also show that recently, unknown gunmen attacks are becoming a norm in the Amakohia Ubi community in Owerri West, another council area in Owerri Zone.

Residents of the community which has a common border with the Agwa community in Oguta LGA, have lamented how unknown gunmen from the Agwa axis, while enforcing the sit-at-home order on Monday, reportedly shot three persons to death.

A community source who pleaded anonymity told DAILY POST that the first victim, from Umuoka Amakohia Ubi, was a police officer identified as Chidiebere Akunna who wasn’t in police uniform but was returning from duty that morning.

He said the second victim, a minibus driver popularly called Bus Imo was reportedly gunned down and his bus set ablaze. The parents of the victim were said to be police officers serving with the old Fire Service Police Station.

He said the gunmen after dealing with their victims and looting some stores headed towards Ndegwu but suddenly made a detour and headed back to Agwa axis.

The source further said the military came with their armoured car and other military equipment immediately after they had zoomed off.

Another resident, Nze Opara likened the situation in Owerri zone to ‘war,’ saying: “We are at war and the earlier our leaders realise this, the better for all of us. We urge the government to intervene in our situation and rescue the community members from the hands of the hoodlums.”

Opara further appealed to the government to intervene and stop the incessant invasion of the community by hoodlums.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Henry Okoye while confirming some of the attacks appealed to Imolites to join hands with the police and other sister security agencies in the crusade against terrorism and to report any suspicious activity or person(s) seen with or treating gunshot injury to the nearest police station

Source: DAilpost

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Celine Dion

Last year the 55-year-old Canadian singer revealed that she was suffering from the rare medical condition that was affecting her singing. Learn more

Nigeria Breaking News

Lagos govt denies alleged plan to lure communities for petrol project

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Lagos

The Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development has debunked reports claiming the ministry is enticing residents of four communities in Ketu to accept the building of a petrol station in their area. The Deputy Director, Public Affairs of the Ministry, Mr Mukaila Sanusi, said this in a statement on Monday in Lagos.

Sanusi, who named the four communities as Demurin, Oba Nle- Aro, Doyin Omololu, and Irawo Osan, said the allegation was false, biased and unfounded.He said, “Contrary to the insinuation of bias by a section of the media, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr Oluyinka Olumide, has disclosed that the stakeholders meeting at Demurin, Oba Nle- Aro, Doyin Omololu, and Irawo Osan community was part of the routine of treating such technical proposals to ensure fairness to all sides.

“Advocacy by proponents for supposedly non-compatible proposals is a welcome development in town planning which, once received by the ministry, must be validated with the host community through dialogue.

“Advocacy has been made to the ministry by the proponents of the project on the basis that Demuren and the adjoining roads are axial roads, serving the Lagos Ikorodu road, with appreciable vehicular coverage.’’

Sanusi explained that the meeting with the community aligned with the Lagos State Urban and Regional Planning and Development Law 2019 (as amended).

He further highlighted that the meeting was consistent with the Lagos State Government’s established approach of involving the public in decision-making, particularly regarding physical planning and governance in general.

He said that such open discussions would help to consider different perspectives and reach the best decision for the state and its residents.

Sanusi added that such dialogues had led to approvals or rejections of various facilities such as markets, cemeteries and petrol stations, among others.

He pledged the ministry’s commitment to fair and transparent procedures, including community involvement, in making decisions related to urban development projects

Source: Dailypost

In other news – Nigeria Customs investigates officer accused of extortion

The Comptroller, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘B’ Kaduna, Mr Dalha Wada-Chedi has handed over the officer alleged to have extorted N500,000.00 from a car buyer, Muhammad Ahmad, to the Customs Police Unit.

Nigeria Customs

The suspected officer, who was alleged to have committed the offence along Mokwa-Jebba Road in Niger, was on Monday handed over to the Assistant Provost Marshal (APM) of the unit in Kaduna. Read more

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Nigeria Breaking News

Nigeria Customs investigates officer accused of extortion

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Nigeria Customs

The Comptroller, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘B’ Kaduna, Mr Dalha Wada-Chedi has handed over the officer alleged to have extorted N500,000.00 from a car buyer, Muhammad Ahmad, to the Customs Police Unit.

The suspected officer, who was alleged to have committed the offence along Mokwa-Jebba Road in Niger, was on Monday handed over to the Assistant Provost Marshal (APM) of the unit in Kaduna.The comptroller, while addressing newsmen in the premises of the unit confirmed that the suspected officer involved in this unwholesome act was an operative of the unit deployed to Mokwa Patrol Team.Wada-Chedi said that the unfortunate incident occurred in the early hours of Thursday as reported by the complainant.

The comptroller said, “Upon hearing the alleged unfortunate incident, I directed the Police Unit in the Zone that is responsible for enforcing discipline in the Service to apprehend the Officer and move him to the Unit’s Headquarters here in Kaduna for further interrogation. Also, the complainant was invited to assist in the investigation as well.

“The Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adeniyi and his management team frowned at such unruly behavior as such the disciplinary committee will be diligent and firm.

“In fact, the service is very pragmatic and practical in disciplinary cases and this one will not be an exception.” According to Wada-Chedi, the suspected officer was handed over to the APM Customs Police Unit for further investigation.

Source: vanguardngr

In other news – This is why Women rejected me due to my looks – Stephen Alajemba speaks out

Veteran Nollywood actor Stephen Alajemba, aka Uwaezuoke, has revealed that he experienced rejection from women and people in general while growing up due to his physical and facial appearances. The thespian said his mother told him that as a baby, people refused to carry him because he was not looking attractive.

 

Stephen Alajemba

He disclosed this in a recent interview with popular YouTuber, Yan Kontent Factory.Alajemba said he promised his mother that he was going to make her proud because she told him that he did not “earn anything good” for her as a child. Read more

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Nigeria Breaking News

Army arrests suspected kidnapper in Edo

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Edo

Troops have apprehended an alleged kidnapper in Iguomor, a community situated in Ikpoba Okha Local Government Area of Edo State, and retrieved vehicles and other items in the process.

The operation was carried out by troops of 4 Brigade and personnel of Operation Wabaizigan, who arrested a suspected kidnapper and gun runner, Ekenaye Festus, along with four of his accomplices.

The Nigerian Army made this known in a statement issued by the spokesperson of 4 Brigade, Chinonso Polycarp Oteh, on its X handle on Monday.Part of the statement reads: “Consequent upon consistent support of the good people of Edo State through the provision of timely and actionable intelligence to Nigerian Army, troops of Headquarters 4 Brigade, personnel of Operation Wabaizigan, acting on credible intelligence, successfully arrested a suspected kidnapper and gun runner, Ekenaye Festus alongside four of his collaborators in the general area of Agbor Road, in Iguomor community, Ikpoba Okha Local Government Area of Edo State.

“The suspects who were arrested in the early hours of 25 February 2024 have been terrorising the Obagie community and were suspected to have been carrying out kidnappings and other criminal activities within the state.

“Those arrested alongside Ekenaye Festus are Isaac Oghosa, Ameh Innocent, Odion Okpako, and Ajayi Ayoola.

Source: pmnewsnigeria

 

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