‘Security Operatives Shooting Indiscriminately In Southern Nigeria’ – Journalists Seek Buhari’s Intervention

A body of senior journalists from South-eastern Nigeria , known as ‘Izunwanne’, has disclosed that security operatives have taken federal government’s “shoot at sight order” out of context, thereby allegedly shooting indiscriminately at citizens in Igboland and South-South region.

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The group’s Chairman, Abuchi Anueyiagu, disclosed this in a statement made available to THE WHISTLER on Tuesday.

He urged President Muhammadu Buhari to weigh in on the matter so as to avert unwarranted waste of life.

“IZUNWANNE pleads with President Muhammadu Buhari to cool his temper as the father of the country and review his “shoot at sight” order to stop security operatives from taking advantage of the order to engage in indiscriminate shootings and mowing down of the lives of many vulnerable, helpless and innocent people in both southeast and Southsouth zones of the country, as is currently the case in the two zones. Such approach can never bring peace but would rather compound issues, lead to intimidation, suppression and coercion,” the statement partly read.

THE WHISTLER earlier reported that following security challenges across the country, the presidency had on March 3 issued a statement quoting President Buhari as ordering security forces to, “go into the bushes and shoot whoever they see with sophisticated weapons like AK-47.”

In the same view, Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, had also directed police officers to go after criminal elements in the South-east.

But Anueyiagu held that some operatives may hold on to that order to unethically deal with innocent civilians.

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He advised the FG to address it while looking at deploying other options for the peace and security of the region.

“There are better other possible and legal ways available to government to responsibly bring about peace and tranquility in the zones than the present path which the security forces are taking.

“IZUNWANNE condemns in strong terms the wanton violence that has suddenly engulfed the Southeast and Southsouth geo-political zones of the country and call for the return of peace.” the statement partly read.

Furthermore, the group condemned the destruction of public institutions in the region, adding that such vices does not represent the Igbos.

It urged all parties involved in human rights violations and destructions of lives and properties to refrain from such atrocities.

The statement further reads: “We also condemn in very strong terms the attack on government agencies and assets, as well as the killing of security personnel by whichever unidentified gunmen in the zones. This should stop.

“Our association also roundly condemns the attendant indiscriminate killing of innocent persons in the guise of going after the arsonists and destroyers of public facilities in the area.

“As a people, Ndigbo do not support the killing of security forces and burning of public and private properties by unknown gunmen on one hand and the indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians by enraged security personnel on the other hand hand, in the South-east geo-political zone.”

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