Following the cancellation of Monday sit-at-home in Enugu State by Gov Peter Mbah, the state police command has begun the deployment of human and material resources for the implementation of the order.
The command’s public relations officer, DSP Daniel Ndukwe, stated this in a statement on Saturday. Ndukwe said the state police commissioner, CP Ahmed Ammani, has ordered area commanders, divisional police officers, commanders of PMF Squadron Bases, other tactical and operational units of the command to deploy personnel and all the operational and intelligence resources at their disposal to actualize the declaration.
The CP further directed them to ensure that the strategies already devised to reverse the ugly trend were implemented to the letter, warning that lapses on their parts would not be tolerated.
According to Ndukwe, “CP Ammani notes that innocent and law-abiding citizens of the state deserve to go about their lawful businesses without fear of harassment or physical threats by criminal elements enforcing the illegal sit-at-home order.
“He tasked the personnel to ensure that every part of the state is visibly patrolled and necessary policing actions taken to forestall possible adverse activities of the undesirable criminal elements.”
Mbah had on Thursday declared an end to the Monday sit-at-home in the state. Sit-at-home was declared in the South-East states of Nigeria since 2021 by the Indigenous People of Biafra to pressure the release of its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
Quoting Mbah, “The idea behind sitting at home on Monday, the first working and business day of the week, is abominable and antithetical to greatness and the spirit of industry we profess to have inherited from our forebears. This cannot be us. Tufiakwa (God forbid). It does colossal damage to us.
“For us to transit from a public service economy to a private sector-driven one, we must free our markets from the shackles of restriction to commerce. If indeed we aspire and anticipate an influx of private sector practitioners and investors in Enugu State, we must know that this will not happen where the perception of us is that of unproductive people.
“Therefore, those that strike on Mondays, putting restrictions in the way of our Igbo spirit of creativity, cannot be our true representatives. In fact, they kill our spirit.
“To this end, therefore, from Monday June 6, 2023, there will be no observance of any sit-at-home in all nooks and crannies of Enugu State.
“Government will enforce this with all the powers at its disposal. My charge to all of you – market men and women, the corporate world, industries, schools, civil servants, and all strata of workers in Enugu State — is for us to take back our sense of industry, pride of place and re-enact our glorious past.”
Meanwhile, IPOB, through its head of media, Mr Emma Powerful, weekend, warned Governor Peter Mbah against any plans to jeopardize the activities of the movement in the state.
Recall that some members of the pro-Biafra actualisation group were arrested in Enugu while celebrating the Biafran Day on May 30th.
Powerful said in a release that, “We are reminding the new governor of Enugu State, Mr Peter Mba, to shine his eyes so that the Nigerian government, through his political enemies, will not turn the peaceful state of Enugu into a theatre of crisis.
“If he allows the enemies to use him against IPOB, then we will make Enugu State tough for him to govern.”
While condemning the arrest of the IPOB members, Power blamed the Nigerian military for allegedly attacking ‘peaceful IPOB members holding a candlelight service for the remembrance of Biafran heroes and heroines at Emene, Enugu State, on the night of May 29, 2023’.
He said, “Globally, Biafrans gathered on various continents on the 29th and 30th of May, 2023, to honor our fallen heroes and heroines without harassment, but it was only in the zoo called Nigeria that our people were attacked, abducted and killed.
“The Nigerian military combined team attacked the peaceful Biafrans holding a candlelight service and offering prayers for the fallen Biafran heroes and heroines at Emene, Enugu State, on May 29, 2023.
“The Biafrans were peaceful and praying when the gathering was invaded by overzealous Nigerian military.”
IPOB is led by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, who is currently in the custody of the Department of the State Services over alleged running a proscribed group, jumping bail and treason.