The principal officers of the Nigerian Army responsible for the Army’s touted “Operation Golden Dawn” in the Southeast part of Eastern Nigeria have become totally deaf and dumb as Enugu goes up in flames ignited by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen.
As a matter of fact, “Enugu State is no longer in the Hands of God”. The State, especially communities surrounding the State’s ancient Capital City have come under heavy and unchecked jihadist invasions by the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen.
The invasions of the Capital of Eastern Nigeria; also the Christian Capital of the East are coming few months after it was trended and widely streamed in social media by some locals that “they saw a strange security helicopter dropping weapons of death to a group of persons with unknown tribal identities”; an allegation controversially dismissed by security and political establishments in the State.
However, by available pieces of investigative intelligence, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen have since 10th Nov 2022 or in the past two weeks invaded various parts of the State and ignited flames, fears, panics, blood, and tears among the helpless Enugu communities and their defenseless rural dwellers leading to unspecified number of deaths and injuries.
This is to the extent that several key and heavily motorized inter-state and federal roads and communal bypasses have become no-go areas and death-traps. For two weeks, the ‘Four-Corner’ part of Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway, Ugwuogo-Nike-Opi Nsukka part of Enugu, Nsude part of Old Enugu-Onitsha Road and Eke-Ezeagu axis, etc have come under severe invasions and attacks by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen. Several communities in Ezeagu, Udi, Nkanu West, Nkanu East, Okpanku area of Ani-Nri, Uzo-Uwani, Isi-Uzo, Igbo-Eze North, Igbo-Eze South, Igbo-Etiti, Ngwo part of Enugu East, Enugu West, Oji River, etc have been invaded and attacked or come under serious threats of invasion and attack by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen; thereby thrown them into nightmare.
In the past two weeks under reference, over 20 or as much as 30 defenseless passengers have been abducted-with scores shot and critically injured, if not killed. On Tuesday, 15th Nov 2022, at least three persons who are indigenes/friends of Nsude in Udi were abducted by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen dressed in military camouflage and armed with automatic rifles.
The Jihadist abductors also covered their faces with Arabic textiles. As at three days ago, 21st Nov 2022, the abducted victims have not been freed and their friend car owner is still on admission at a private hospital in Onitsha over gunshot wounds sustained while trying to escape with his car.
Eha-Amufu Community in Isi-Uzo Local Government Area of the State has been under bloody attack and butchery by the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen. This is to the extent that since Monday, Nov 21, 2022, 20-25 defenseless locals-all Christians; have been slaughtered and several dwelling houses burned down or destroyed.
Many of those communities under threats of invasion and attack have been sleeping with one eye closed while several others especially young women of non-menopausal age brackets have fled to avoid being raped to death or have their womanhoods defiled or abused.
The slain and the maimed victims of the Jihadists’ attacks include ageing, women, and children. The invasions, attacks, killings, human person degradations, and property destructions in the affected communities have been perpetrated by the Jihadists with little or no counter-responses from Army and Police; except in minutest cases by local vigilantes.
Army And Police Press Conferences Gone Silent And Soldiers Disappeared
As expected, soldiers of the Nigerian Army and various police crack squads have disappeared to only God knows where and their conjectured public statements and press conferences on “Biafra Matters” gone silent and dead.
The Jihadist siege at the ‘Four-Corner’, for instance, has been going on unchallenged despite the presence of six military checkpoints within a space of less than five kilometers. Same is the case with Ugwuogo-Nike-Opi-Nsukka Road.
Intersociety had severally investigated and found that the military and other security forces and their principal officers deployed in the East particularly the South-East are aiding and abetting the genocidal activities of the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen in the East including their jihadist incursions into the Region’s forests, bushes, and farmlands.
It is no longer new to observe that the only operational mandate of the deployed security forces and their commanders in the East is to “murderously go after those involved in “Biafra Matters” including the unarmed and the uninvolved. A former Army Chief of Northern Muslim extraction had in 2021 charged soldiers “to take war to South-East villages and communities where soldiers are attacked or killed”.
Since then, hell has been let loose on defenseless Easterners/South-Easterners and their properties while same military turn total blind eyes on genocidal activities of the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen in the East; cuddling and breast-feeding them.
The ongoing conquest and annihilative invasion and attack of Enugu by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen are coming barely ten days after our detailed and facts laden special report on military siege and terror in the East.
Intersociety had incontrovertibly disclosed in the special report that pieces of evidence abound showing that military operations in the East since 2016 under the present political dispensation had aided Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen incursions into Eastern Christian forests, bushes, and farmlands and brought about unchecked massacre of defenseless citizens and their properties in their thousands. Such military operations have also been layered in the cloak of brigandage, ethnic profiling, brazen partisanship, crudity, class criminalization, stigmatization, hate soldiering and mass murders, and ‘industrial scale’ violence against properties as well as other internationally prohibited acts or conducts.
South-East Govs Should Go And Bury Their Faces In Shame
The present crop of South-East Govs, the worst since 1999, should go and bury their faces in shame. Intersociety has continued to receive investigative intelligence strongly showing that the Govs are strongly but remotely aware of the conquest mapping of the East particularly South-East by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and their backers within the Nigerian Government and the country’s security and defense establishments.
The Govs are so weak that they have knowingly but clandestinely signed away the Eastern territorial and human person security and safety. The Govs have also been using diversionary and deceitful tactics against their people by constantly denying or debunking invasions and attacks by the Jihadists.
This is to the extent they constantly pressurize traditional rulers and religious leaders and their political subordinates not to link such invasions and attacks to Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen, but to “Unknown Gunmen” or “ESN/IPOB” terrorists.
The Govs’ lame-duck position is also extended to “intelligence” being acted upon by the commanders of the deployed security agencies-branded “ESN/IPOB Toxins”. Today, the beginning of wisdom for a victim of Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen abduction or attack in the South-East is changing the narrative of his or her abduction or attack to that “perpetrated by Unknown Gunmen/ESN/IPOB”.
The Govs are so conformist, weak, and rudderless that they sit and do nothing while over 90% of security, defense, and policing formations in their Region/States are flooded with senior commanders of non East/South-East extraction who are mainly, if not mostly Northern Muslims; a sort of sobriquet “esprit de jihad”.
Govs Must Go For 60% Security Chiefs From The East And Transfer Of 20 Muslim Commanders
For purpose of ensuring ethno-religious de-radicalization of the safety and security in the East and giving the Eastern population a true sense of belonging including ‘security and safety with local contents’, the eleven Govs of Edo, Delta, Anambra, Enugu, Ebonyi, Imo, Abia, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, and Bayelsa must jointly or separately go for 60% Security Chiefs from the East and immediate transfer of no fewer than 20 senior military and police commanders of Muslim extraction and other disproportionately deployed senior officers of non Eastern origin.
We have found that except CPs of Anambra (Echeng Echeng), Rivers (Okon Effiong Okon), and Bayelsa (Ben Nebeolisa Okolo), the rest are non Easterners mainly, if not mostly Northern Muslims.
These explain our firm position that the eleven Eastern Govs must approach the High Commands of the Nigerian Army, Navy, Air Force, DSS, and Nigeria Police Force and insist on 60% Security Chiefs from the East deployment to the East and immediate transfer of the 20 Muslim senior security officers listed below.
That is to say that there shall be total deployment of 60% indigenous Eastern senior officers and 20% other Christian senior officers and remainder of 20% allocated to Northern Muslims. The affected senior security officers under our firm request for immediate transfer out of the East are:
Major Gen Aminu Chinade, GOC, 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Port Harcourt, Major Gen Umar Musa, GOC 82 Division, Enugu, Brig Gen Sani Suleiman, 34 Brigade Commander, Obinze, Brig Gen Adegoke Adetuyi, 14 Brigade Commander, Ohafia, Brig Gen Abubakar Wase, Brig Commander, 2 Brigade, Uyo, Brig Gen Danlami Ndahi, Brig Commander, 4 Brigade, Benin, Col M.B. Abubakar, Commander, 302 Artillery, Onitsha, Air Vice Marshal Ibikunle Daramola, Air Officer Commanding Ground Tactical Command, Enugu, Rear Admiral Ibrahim Dewu, Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Calabar; AIG Kamaldeen Kola Okunlola, Police AIG in charge of Zone 6 Calabar, AIG Abutu Yaro, AIG in charge of Zone 13 Awka, AIG Lawan Jimeta, AIG in charge of Zone 5 Benin, AIG I. Akinmoyede, AIG in charge of Zone 9 Umuahia, CP Mustapha Bala Mohammed, Commissioner of Police, Abia State, CP Ahmed Ammani, Commissioner of Police, Enugu State, CP Muhammed Ali, Commissioner of Police, Delta State, CP Mohammed Ahmed Barde, Commissioner of Police, Imo State, CP Aliyu Garba, Commissioner of Police, Ebonyi State, CP Sule Balarabe, Commissioner of Police, Cross River State, CP Olatoye Durosinmi, Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom State and CP Mohammed Adamu Dankwara, Commissioner of Police, Edo State. Such overhauls must also be extended to headships of Spy Police formations in the eleven States as well as principal officers of the Army, Navy, and Air Force bases, artilleries, battalions, and engineering regiments in Warri, Ogoja, Abakiliki, Enugu, Elele, Ogbaru, Owerre-Nta, Asa and Aba.
For: International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety)
Emeka Umeagbalasi, Criminologist/Researcher
Board Chair @Intersociety