Pained by the killing of security operatives and extensive destruction of property at Izombe in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State at the weekend, Governor Hope Uzodimma has vowed that the perpetrators of the mayhem would be unmasked and brought to justice.
He has also promised that government will set up a Panel of Inquiry that will look into the immediate and remote causes of the crises and make recommendations that will help stop further occurrence.
Addressing newsmen on Monday in the company of military and police authorities, the Governor expressed dismay over the ugly incident, particularly a situation where bandits confronted the Military Patrol, burnt their vehicle, abducted and killed two soldiers, and made away with their riffles.
“The recent happenings have brought to the fore the earlier State’s directive that anybody, no matter how highly placed, who is in possession of any weapon should return it to the Security Agencies.”
Governor Uzodimma said: “Regrettably the time given for such had elapsed. Therefore, anybody still keeping any weapon runs the risk of being arrested and prosecuted and made to face the full weight of the law.”
He warned: “Government will go out to fully implement that directive and ensure that all bandits no matter where they are, are discovered and brought to book.”
Governor Uzodimma said it is no longer pardonable for the people or group of persons to take laws into their hands, regretting that banditry, violence, kidnapping and other forms of crime and criminality have been on the increase since the jail break in Owerrri that saw criminals melt into the streets.
“The evidence of their activities is manifested in what happened at Izombe Community where one of those who confronted the military was an escapee from Owerri Prisons. Fortunately or otherwise, the hoodlum was killed by the soldiers in the confrontation.”
The Governor sent his condolences to the families of the deceased soldiers and statesmen who died in the mayhem in the course of service to their fatherland and assured that their sudden death will not be allowed to go in vain.
He reiterated that Government will do all within its powers to support the security agencies, no matter what it will cost, to ensure peace fully returns to Imo State.
Governor Uzodimma also promised to visit Izombe Community to get first hand information of what transpired with a view to setting up a Commission of Inquiry to look into the causes and effects of what transpired.