…jubilation as police hierarchy announce CP’s removal, residents laud IGP
Jubilation erupted in Abakaliki on Wednesday following the sudden removal of the Commissioner of Police, Garba Aliyu.
The jubilation spilled into everywhere in the state as the news spread because he had been severally linked with the atrocious escapades of the Ebubeagu outfit, a charge he has constantly denied.
Consequently, credible sources have revealed that the Inspector-General of Police is currently investigating all reports of the high handedness of the Ebubeagu in the state.
“Changing the CP is one of the many ways the IGP is dealing with the Ebonyi state situation. The IGP has also set up an investigation panel into any report of the atrocities of Ebubeagu. The new CP has been told clearly to curtail their menace and move the state away from militia anarchists”, a source said.
Petitions had mount on the activities of Ebubeagu, the police highest command in Ebonyi State.
He has since been replaced with Mr Faleye ES Olaleye as the new Commissioner of Police.
Residents however felt otherwise believing the redeployed Commissioner of Police has been colluding with the governor, Dave Umahi to oppress opposition.
Many politicians have directly accused him of using the militia group to embarrass opponents and attack anyone criticiszing him.
The police highest command on Tuesday acted fast by removing Aliyu.
Speculations have been rife that he had obviously been compromised state top cop.
A new helmsman have since been sent to the state.
Speaking on the development, several residents said the removal was timely and highly welcome as the state was already descending into a lawless zone.
Ezra Obi, a trader said that Ebubeagu had unleashed a regime of hellish attack on the citizenry. He said, “even simple civilian issues, they Wade in and deal with people. We were harassed and subjected to all sort of maltreatment.”
Several protesters both within Ebonyi and outside the state have continued to criticize the governor for using the armed group to deal with politicians and anyone with an independent view.
Ms Blessing Peter, a house wife based in Afikpo narrated how Ebubeagu beat her and her family for supporting the PDP. She said, “we are a PDP family. The governor moved to the APC on his own. Now he wants to force us all to follow suit. They came here and pulled down the poster outside and start shouting. We were treated like common prisoners.”
She expressed happiness that a new Commissioner of Police has been appointed, saying she believed his coming will bring some relief.
Many opposition politicians welcome the development, stressing that a level playing field has been created for the upcoming polls.
Many analysts had continued to accuse the police under the command of Aliyu of siding with the Ebubeagu outfit.
A report also revealed that the formation was used in muzzling opposition in the state through intimidation and other oppressive actions.
For instance, a former Governor of the state, Senator Sam Egwu, narrated how the police stood by and supervised his harassment by the Ebubeagu militia.
He said he was on his way to a rally when a blockade by the group delayed his entry into Ebonyi local government headquarters for his campaign. He lamented the fact that the police always appear helpless where Ebubeagu nefarious activities are involved.
Egwu condemned the governor for emasculating the political space, stressing that he (Umahi) was making it difficult for democracy to thrive.
Interestingly, the Human Rights Writers Association (HURIWA) had also issued a searing statement on the activities of Ebubeagu, accusing Governor Dave Umahi of colluding with the militia to haunt political opponents.
HURIWA, a respected pro-human rights organization, has since followed up its statement with letters of petitions to the United States Embassy among other foreign missions to deny Governor Umahi Visas.