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Stop Playing Politics With Burning Of Eke Ututu Market- Uzodimma Cautions Opposition


Stop Playing Politics With Burning Of Eke Ututu Market- Uzodimma Cautions Opposition

Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodimma has expressed regret that the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is trying to make a political capital of the burning of the Eke Ututu Market in Orsu Ihitte ukwa in Orsu Local Government Area.

Security operatives had raided and burnt the market last Saturday. 

Speaking at a news conference at Government House, Owerri, on Wednesday, Governor Uzodimma said  from the behavior of the PDP members in Imo State, they want to frustrate the conduct of elections in the State.

“This is not politics; it’s about the security of lives and property of our people. And anybody who wants to play politics with this should be ready to face history that will judge all of us” he said.

The Governor explained in details how Eke Ututu at Orsu Local Government Area Imo State was burnt last Saturday

His words: “Last month soldiers on duty around Orsu, Awo Idemili area lost an Army Major to illegal and locally manufactured explosives.

“Only last Saturday the Joint Security Forces who arrested one of the bandits took him to where they operate from to go and visit where the local explosives are manufactured.  It turned out to be at Eke Ututu market where four shops were stocked with fertilizers, ammonia sulphate and other electrical gadgets used in manufacturing explosives were packed.

“Unfortunately, the Army Captain that led the operation to the market is now lying critically at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Federal Medical Centre Owerri as a result of attack he sustained in the operation.

“Consequent upon the above, the soldiers were able to recover all the weapons and the fertilizers meant to manufacture the local Improvised Explosive Device.  In the process of this operation the Military burnt down the shops as this is consistent with their policies.  

“The Good news, however, is that they were careful and so tactical that no live was lost.  They were only able to destroy the shops where they met these items and came back.

“It pleased some citizens of the State, most of them who are candidates running for elections in some political parties, to condemn the activities of the security agencies, some brazenly blackmailing the security agencies on why should they go there at all, when none of them made any attempt to visit the scene (Eke Ututu).  

“These are Imo people, some are at Abuja speaking to the Media while others are in Owerri ranting while Imo State is bleeding.

“In the same Eke Ututu market, some natives and traders cannot go to the market without paying illegal taxes to the bandits and unknown gunmen to enable them open their shops.  This,  unfortunately, is what government had been fighting all through.”

Governor Uzodimma promised that “Government is in a position to deal with any collateral damage that may go with the security agencies operations as it concerns the destruction of shops and historical significance of Eke Ututu market, but lives lost can never be recovered.”

He added: ” When Eke Ututu is destroyed to give Imo people peace, Imo government can rebuild the market and if in the process properties and items are lost government can work out compensation, but government has the responsibility to fight crime.”

The Governor recalled how insecurity had tried to envelop Imo State for nearly three years now and how Government has made efforts to contain the situation in addition to the clarion call on communities and Local Governments to support the security agencies in their efforts to contain the level of insecurity.

He equally recalled Government’s call on the bandits and the unknown gunmen to seize fire, surrender and lay down their arms, discuss with government so that government can work with them in terms of rehabilitation and empowerment.

“Why some answered the call, surrendered and are talking with government, the adamant ones continued visiting mayhem and destroying properties of innocent Imo citizens.

“It is now a clarion call for all Imolites, both those residents and those visiting to volunteer information that will lead to managing insecurity in Imo State.” he stated.

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