Chairman, Interim Management Committee of Njaba Local Government Area of Imo State, Emeka Iheanacho has indicted the Police over the bloody attack on the council headquarters, that took the lives of two traditional rulers and left many others injured.
In a report personally signed by the IMC Chairman and made available to Atlantic Reporters, the council boss accused the police of refusing to provide security for the meeting of traditional rulers on the said day, despite assurances of doing so.
Below is the full report, as issued by the Council Chairman:
REPORT ON THE ATTACK ON NJABA LGA COUNCIL HEADQUARTERS AND KILLING OF TWO TRADITIONAL RULERS
The Interim Management Committee Chairman of Njaba Local Government Area scheduled three major programmes for yesterday 19th October, 2021 at the council headquarters, Nnenasa. The programmes are:
1. Distribution of 20,000 exercise books to heads of primary and secondary schools in Njaba LGA
2. Njaba LGA stakeholders meeting for submission of community project needs for Imo state 2022 budget
3. My monthly meeting with Njaba LGA council of traditional rulers
In order to ensure security of lives and property during the meeting, I called one ASP Nwankwo, who leads the Njaba LGA Police Operation Search and Flush Team on 18 October 2021 and requested the presence of his tea at the council headquarters the next day for the above programme. He agreed to come with his team. The police also came to the council headquarters on 19th October 2021 with his team as agreed. But shortly before the commencement of the programme, the leader of the police team, ASP Nwankwo came to my office and informed me that their commander instructed them to return to Owerri. I refused to allow them to go in order to avoid jeopardizing the security of lives and properties in the environment, but they insisted to go. They finally left and told me that they would be back before the next two hours. The HOD Works of the Council, Mr. Emeka Uneanya, and a vigilante security officer of the council, Mr. Ernest Okorochukwu were witnesses to the argument between me and the police team leader in my office. Our meetings and programme however commenced as we hoped on the return of the police team as they promised. But three hours after the commencement of the meeting, we did not see them. I then called the team leader to know why they have not come back, but he told me that their commander had not yet released them.
Our usual monthly meeting with the traditional rulers which happened to be the last programme for the day was about to be concluded when we saw some armed men approaching the council hal where the meeting was taking place. The unknown gunmen on reaching the door to the hall and opened fire and shot at some of us as we were scampering for safety. Unfortuneley we lost two traditional rulers, Eze Anayo Durueburuo of Okwudor Autonomous Community and Eze Samson Osunwa of Ihebinowere autonomous community who died on the spot. Three traditional rulers also sustained gunshot injuries. They are: HRH A. N Onyeka of Nkume Autonomous Community, HRH P. C Ukonu of Ugbele Aka Autonomous Community and HRH Uche Nwaka of Umunnam Autonomous Community. The incident took place by some minutes 3 pm.
Your Excellency, while we appreciate your efforts to ensuring the security of lives and properties of Njaba LGA, I wish to appeal that the DSS Operation Search and Flush Team, and NSCDC Operation Search and Flush Team posted to Njaba LGA be urged to report and commence work in the LGA with immediate effect to beef up security in the area.