From Steve Oko, Umuahia
Worried by the incessant extra-judicial killings by security operatives in Abia State since the beginning of covid-19, Dr. Alex Otti has called on the government and the heirachy of various security agencies to put a stop to the ugly development.
Otti who was the 2019 governorship candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA in the state, warned that the sad development, if unchecked, could lead to avoidable anarchy in the state.
The former banker was reacting to the killing of a 17 -year old boy by a police team on illegal duty on Sunday, called for the immediate prosecution of the killer squad.
Otti in a press release by his Media Aide, Ferdinand Ekeoma, expressed utmost sadness over the incident which has added to the growing number of extrajudicial killings involving security agents since the outset of the lockdown in the state.
The AUTHORITY in Abia recalls that a police man had in penultimate week, shot dead a petrol attendant in Aba ,while a driver was also shot dead by a personnel of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC) at a checkpoint at Umueka junction of the Enugu -Port Harcourt Expressway.
“Otti views the latest killing and others before it as vicious, humiliating, senseless and highly provocative,” the release read.
The release further read : “it’s disgraceful and a clear manifestation of incompetence and unprofessionalism for security agents to have wasted five innocent lives of promising youths in different parts of Abia, even when no single case of Coronavirus has been officially recorded in the state.
“Unlike what is obtainable in some parts of the country where youths are generally violent, majority of Abia youths are artisans and business men and women who go about their legitimate businesses very peacefully, just as Abia does not have history or culture of violence and militancy that should warrant the level of extreme violence being unleashed on Abia youths by extortionist security agents who seem to have found the state as a fertile ground to make quick money.
“The incessant killing of Abia youths has the propensity to ignite umcontrollable violence and general breakdown of law and order as witnessed in Ohafia LGA where spontaneous protest and violence erupted following the death of the 17 year old boy who was gruesomely murdered by a policeman.
“Since the Abia state police command has officially stated that the policemen, including the one that pulled the trigger that killed the boy were on an illegal operation and acted under the influence of alcohol, there’s need for a decisive action to be taken against these policemen whose actions have brought unbearable sorrow and agony to the boy’s family, his community and Abia as a whole.
“Since the Abia police command appears helpless in the face of the daily extrajudicial killings, against the expectations of the citizenry, Abia state government should without further delay officially engage the national hierarchy of the security agencies to directly intervene in a bid to halt the ongoing senseless killing of innocent Abians. Dr. Otti will also assist in intervening to quickly halt the unprovoked killings.”
Otti condoled with the families of the deceased and urged them to bear the tragedies with while praying God to grant the souls of the victims eternal repose.