294 views | Kenechukwu Ofomah | March 17, 2021
Awka – Following the recent incidents of kidnapping recorded along the Omor-Anaku axis of the Ayamelum road, heads of various security agencies and their tactical teams on Tuesday visited the area.
There have been reports of kidnappings for three consecutive days along the route, with high-profile indigenes mainly targeted.
Last week, a President-General in one of the Ayamelum Communities was kidnapped and a ransom of N50 million said to have been demanded by the criminals.
The criminal activities have been attributed to Fulani herdsmen inhabiting the vast forest area in the agrarian local government area.
Speaking yesterday after a visit to the area, the Anambra Commissioner of Police, CP Monday Kuryas, who heads the State Joint Security Taskforce including the Police, the Army, the Navy and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, among others, said security has been reinforced along the Ayamelum road as a way of addressing the incidences of kidnapping and armed robbery.
He confirmed the incidents of kidnapping reported along the route, saying that investigations have commenced to unravel the circumstances that led to the heightened insecurity in the area.
“What has happened here is quite unfortunate and that is why we have come here to get an on-the-spot assessment of the situation and boost the morale of our personnel to fight this ugly incidents. As a matter of urgency, we have beefed up security along the route to be able to respond immediately to any form of insecurity here. There is no way we will condone such criminal activities that undermine our position as the safest state in the country,” the CP said.
Kuryas urged stakeholders in the area to avail the security agents the necessary information and intelligence to permanently address the issue.
“I want to appeal to all stakeholders in the area to support the security agents with intelligence reports that will help us nip this challenge in the bud. They know the terrain better than we do and we believe with their support, we will be able to tackle this problem, head on,” he enthused.
On the cases of herdsmen attack on farmers in the area, the Anambra CP, said the meeting between farmers has been made more frequent to help address pockets of issues as they arise, before they escalate.
He observed that the decision of the meeting to pay compensation whenever farmlands are destroyed or cattle or human lives destroyed, is working, but said the taskforce which he heads, also aims to speed up the process of payment of compensation as a way of addressing the issue.
The traditional ruler of Omor, Igwe Oranu Chidume while speaking with TNC correspondent, regretted that the issue of kidnapping has become a recurring incident in the area and pleaded that something urgent be done.
“The situation has been a disturbing one. We are worried because the kidnapping has become incessant. It had occurred for three consecutive days. So we are calling on the state government and the security agencies to immediately deploy heavily to this area to tackle this problem. On our part, we will support the police and the others but they must deploy immediately. We are Anambrarians and need to enjoy the same security others in other parts of the state are enjoying,” he said.