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Worried by the recent spate of attacks on security personnel in parts of Anambra State which has seen some policemen and naval pay the supreme price, Governor Willie Obiano yesterday warned that any attack on security personnel meant an attack on the state.
The Governrmnt gave this warning in a strongly-worded statement, where he disclosed that those involved in the dastardly act would face the full weight of the law.
His words: ‘Within the past week or so, we have witnessed what obviously is a planned and targeted attack on Security personnel and facilities in the State by armed hoodlums.
‘So far, Police Officers and Navy personnel on official duties at strategic checkpoints in various locations in the state were sporadically attacked, killed and their firearms are taken away. Also, prison and police personnel conveying an inmate to court were equally attacked and killed.
‘This morning, (Sunday),: a Police outpost was attacked unsuccessfully as joint Police, vigilante and community efforts repelled the attackers.
‘Anambra State government categorically condemns these attacks on our security personnel and is doing everything possible to apprehend the perpetrators and bring them to justice.
‘Since these attacks commenced, I have personally coordinated security commanders in the State with a joint effort to halt this mayhem and by God’s, we will surely succeed. The State Security Council has met twice and I summoned another emergency meeting this afternoon hence my address.
‘Let me emphatically state that any attacks on security personnel in Anambra is a direct attack on the State itself and will be resisted with our greatest might. Those who attack us are obviously intent on distorting the peace and security we have enjoyed in Anambra State in the past seven years and we will not allow that.
‘We have received massive Police, Army, Navy, and DSS deployment since yesterday and they have joined their teams on the ground to enforce security.
‘I have therefore directed all security agencies in the State, the Vigilante Services, all task forces and every structure in the State security infrastructure to rise in defence of our dear state.
‘I call on all youths in Anambra State, all communities, all market task forces and indeed every outfit in this State to duty.
‘All traditional rulers, PGs, community leaders as well as every stakeholder in Anambra to rise to protect our State.
‘As your Governor, I hereby raise the security alert in the state and I commit to restoring order and security immediately.
‘I call on everybody irrespective of affiliations to come together and support Government and security agencies to fight our common enemy. Those who seek to destroy what we have labored to build must not be tolerated in any manner. I ask the public to help with information and intelligence to the State to nip this situation in the bud.
‘Going forward, extensive security activities will be obvious and by God’s grace, we shall overcome. Fitted Tinted glasses on vehicles as well as covered plate numbers will no longer be allowed on all roads within the state. Security agencies will be conducting special and strategic operations aimed at neutralising the emerging threats to our collective safety.
‘I, therefore, ask for the understanding of the public as this goes on and assure you that all law abiding citizens have nothing to worry about.
‘While I sympathise with the security agencies and families of those killed in these recent attacks, I urge all those involved in ongoing security efforts not to relent.
‘The Police, military and all security agencies and outfits in the state are urged to step out in full boldness to reclaim the public space, dominate the streets, confront criminals when identified and urgently restore order and safety to Anambra State.’
Obiano also spoke on the increasing wave of cult activities in parts of the state, stating that he had ordered a clampdown on all cultists and their activities.
‘This state shall no longer tolerate the violence that erupts now and then in the name of cultism. Those who try our will in this regard will have themselves to blame! I urge all youths in the State to shun cultism and embrace meaningful lifestyles,‘ Obiano stated.
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