The Extrajudicial Killings By Security Agencies Enforcing Covid-19lockdwon Can Slide Abia State Into Anarchy:
The Foundation for Environmental Rights Advocacy and Development, FENRAD, having monitored the security processes involved in the enforcement of the statewide lockdown and its attendant stay-at-home order in line with containment of Covid-19, wishes to state that: • The four (4) latest extrajudicial killings by security agencies preceding and together with that which happened in Ebem Ohafia in Ohafia LGA, Abia State, on Friday, April 17, 2020 can slide a hitherto peaceful state into anarchic state if not properly addressed and now.
This conviction stems from the ruckus and riot that followed the killing of One Mr. Friday Arunsi, 17, by some police officers, whereupon angry village youths took to protest culminating in destruction of chattels and other valuables, police station included. •That heretofore, normalcy and peace have all reigned in Abia and all the parts therein before police and other security agents resorted to excessive force in enforcing the statewide lockdown, operation of which has, so far, proved counterproductive given the latest tragic harvest of deaths. •
The latest killing in Ebem Ohafia is to a great extent evident of the failure of state government machinery given that before the death of Mr. Friday at Ebem, similar deaths had occurred in Abia, Aba mostly. FENRAD wishes to make it express that deaths and carnage the scale of this should have spurred the State House of Assembly to convene an emergency plenary, either as a whole House or that of the security committee to enquire into this matter. •
No state government elected to protect its indigenes remains standoffish or passive while security agencies entrusted with the lives of such indegenes turn the state into a killing field in peace time. To this end, FENRAD seeks a better response from the state government as led by Okezie Ikpeazu, PhD. This has gone beyond issuing of releases; it is time to release constructively democratic action as a duly elected government. • The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Okon Ene, should, as a matter of urgency, rein in excessive use of force on the part of some police officers capable of corroding the fabric of peace in the state.
While the Police State Command have established that the murderers of Mr. Friday, like the murderer of Mr Chibuisi earlier, are in custody, it bears repeating that prosecution and justice are begun and dispensed forthwith. • FENRAD wishes to make known its resolve and position, as a Rights group, to take a legal action if justice is not seen to have been done. FENRAD's legal unit is well briefed to this end. •
Abians should, in the interest of peace, remain calm and peaceful as we go through this trying time together.
Comrade Nelson Nnanna Nwafor
(Executive Director Foundation For Environmental Rights,Advocacy & Development (FENRAD)
Barr. Olusegun Bamgbose
(Head Legal Team FENRAD.)