Imo Attacks: IPOB Building Armoury To Actualise Biafra ~ Ex-AIG, Others
Members of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) are deliberately attacking security formations in the South East to steal weapons in order to fight for the actualisation of the Biafra Republic, experts and security operatives have said.
Also, a human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has described the assault on the Nigerian Correctional Service, NCS, and the police headquarters in Imo State as a sign of state failure, saying the federal government allowed non-state actors to take charge.
Credible sources said the IPOB members who stormed Owerri, the Imo State capital in the early hours of Monday and launched multiple attacks, started their journey from Onitsha in Anambra State and drove for over two hours at night.
It was learnt that the gunmen met resistance from soldiers at Ukworji along Onitsha-Owerri Express Way but overpowered the security operatives.
Two soldiers were said to have been killed while their vehicles were burnt by the assailants.
A retired Assistant Inspector- General of Police, Ambrose Aisabor, has said that the IPOB agitators are bent on declaring the Biafra republic and therefore building up their armoury by attacking security formations.
According to him, this explained why the security arm of the proscribed group has not been attacking innocent citizens.
He said, “If you look at it, they are not attacking ordinary people. They are attacking the police, the army and the air force that is what they are doing.
“Why they are attacking those military formations is because they want to have enough ammunition to enable them prosecute their war against the government of Nigeria. They want to have their own police. They want to have their own armoury and so on.”
AIG Aisabor said they have become so emboldened to attack the security formations because of the failure of intelligence on the part of the security agencies.
According to the security expert, it is high time the security agencies improved on their intelligence gathering to forestall future attacks.
He also called on the federal government to urgently convoke a national security summit involving all stakeholders including the security experts, traditional rulers, religious leaders and government officials to come up with solutions on addressing the insecurity in the land especially the South-East part of the country.
Also speaking, Veteran Wale Okunniyi, who is the convener of June 12 Pro-Democracy Movement and spokesman for the National Consultative Front (NCFront) said the government allowed the IPOB challenge to degenerate.
“As we speak today, there is no national understanding. There are suspicion and distrust here and there.
“Until the government is able to facilitate or join us to facilitate a real national consultation and understanding, attacks by the likes of IPOB would continue,” he added.
A senior military officer who spoke on condition of anonymity said that the attack is a confirmation that terrorism has come to stay in Nigeria, lamenting that the political class is not confronting the evil in an appropriate manner.
The officer believed the attack was carried out by members of IPOB and was for the purpose of sending a message to the government on the strength of the group.
“The unfortunate thing is that the political class and those in authority are not doing enough to stem the tide. IPOB will launch more attacks. They have passed a statement with this and will likely launch more if they are not stopped,” he said.
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