The Return Of Killer-“Generals” & Violent Market “Leaders” In Anambra State (Part 3)
This third part focuses on menace and violent activities of Anambra’s returned killer -“generals” and violent market “leaders”.
For the records and avoidance of doubt, killer-“generals” and violent market “leaders” of Anambra State are made up of chief touts and lead-retreatists as well as militant traders and other inherently violent citizens recruited at market, communal, street and State levels for group, political and vigilante violence who got indoctrinated in the art of black powers and physical violence through guns and machetes and voodooism.
They had been recruited, trained, sponsored and used in one way or the other by successive and present Governments of the State.
These referenced “killer-“generals” and violent market “leaders” and their atrocities originated from disastrous Government of Dr. Chinweoke Mbadinuju (1999-2003) and its butchery “Bakassi Boys”; and majorly drawn from Onitsha, Nnewi and Aba market populations.
Prominent among them then were Camillus Ebekue, Paulinus Ubanozie, WORLD BANK-Orakwu, NTU-Ozubulu, BRAVO-Ozubulu, Bona Maduafokwa, Chuma Nzeribe and Emeka Asoanya (a.k.a. War Machine, who is now the Caretaker Committee Chair of Onitsha South LGA).
They held sway in the inglorious epoch of murderous Onitsha Traders Vigilante Group (OTA); a murderous militia wing of Onitsha Market Traders Association backed by Dr. CC Mbadinuju and then headed by his kinsman, late Mr. Paulinus Ubanozie.
OTA Vigilante Group was scrapped in July 2000 by the Mbadinuju Administration, following public outcries and street demonstrations over indiscriminate and random butchering of citizens in various parts of Onitsha and environs.
It was replaced by the Mbadinuju Administration with yet another murderous outfit, called “Anambra Vigilante Services (AVS)” (a.k.a. Bakassi Boys) through AVS Law No 1 of July 2000.
Among recorded innocent and defenseless citizens butchered, raped or grievously maimed by the duo of murderous OTA and AVS then were Chuma Onwuazo-a trader and Bonaventure Egbuawa-a human rights activist (murdered in April and July 2000, respectively, by then OTA Vigilante Group).
Hon. Ifeanyi Ibegbu (then member of Anambra State House of Assembly) was abducted and tortured by AVS (Bakassi Boys) in the late night of 21st August 2000 at Bakassi Boys White House, Onitsha Main Market but miraculously saved through timely intervention of then IGP, Musiliu Smith.
Edward Okeke (a popular prophet of Nawgu, was murdered by AVS on 9th November 2000 over his prophesy concerning Gov Chinweoke Mbadinuju’s second term bid), Ezeodimegwu Okonkwo ( a.k.a. Jidoga, a popular musician; murdered by AVS on 18th February 2001 at Nusgbe “33”).
Others are Ikechukwu Nwagboo ( then personal assistant to Hon Chudi Offodile of the House of Reps; murdered in place of his boss by AVS in February 2001), Rockfeller Okeke (a top staff of the then Anambra State Ministry of Information; murdered by AVS inside his residence on 23rd April 2001).
Felix Ikebude (an apologist of Emeka Offor’s APF was murdered by AVS in December 2001), Sunday Uzokwe (a physically challenged community leader in Ozubulu, murdered by AVS on 30th January 2002), Mrs. Ngozi Oranu (widow of an Eziowelle wealthy businessman, raped and murdered over her husband’s properties and wealth by AVS at the Bakassi Boys White House, Onitsha Main Market in November 2001).
The rest are Barnabas Igwe (then Onitsha Bar Association Chairman murdered by AVS in the evening of 1st September 2002 along Oraifite Street, Awada), Barr (Mrs.) Amaka Blessing Igwe “A. B. Girl” (wife of Barrister Barnabas Igwe murdered by AVS alongside her husband on 1st September 2002 along Oraifite Street, Awada).
Miss Chinenye Okoye, an SS2 Student of the Mathamavis Secondary School, Umuoji in Anambra State was abducted by AVS ( Bakassi Boys) and taken to its White House in Onitsha Main Market and raped for 60 days. – Sources: The News Magazine, 21st October 2002, page 21; Civil Liberties Organization, Anambra State Branch and Emeka Umeagbalasi, 2002, 2003 and 2011.
These are to mention but a few.
A total of over 5000 citizens were slain and thousands of others grievously maimed in the inglorious epoch era (1998-2002) of OTA and AVS (Bakassi Boys) Vigilante Groups. Several young married and unmarried women were also snatched from their husbands, or parents or guardians and raped or forced into sexual intercourse with members and commanders of the duo of OTA and AVS.
Militant market leaders using the said vigilante operatives also became an outlaw, to the extent of having forced sexual intercourse with young married women and unmarried others in a broad day light inside their offices located in open markets; with their husbands or parents or guardians watching helplessly and fearing for their lives.
Today, among the remnants of the named killer-“generals” and violent market “leaders” who have resurfaced in the State are “General” Chinenye Ihemko (a.k.a. Okpompi). He is the current AVS chief of Onitsha Main Market and a wealthy monstrous vigilantism industrialist in Anambra State.
He is also one of those picked from Aba market population in July 2000 courtesy of then Mbadinuju Administration and made one of the earliest unit commanders of AVS or Bakassi Boys.