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ETIM EKPO/UKANAFUN CRISES:

ETIM EKPO/UKANAFUN CRISES:

AKS Police Command Demonstrates Preparedness for 2019 Elections

By Saviour Ekpe

In the history of Akwa Ibom State since her creation in September 1987, the people and residents of the state had not known such vices as killings, kidnapping, cultism and sponsored armed robbery until 2007 – 2015 when the state started to record in huge number these vices. The residents were as frightened as to when the state would return to normally and human lives begin to have meaning and sacredness again.

Women in the State organized themselves, dressed in black attire to symbolize mourning and engaged in fervent fast and prayers even in open places including Ibom Hall; Churches showed wonderful commitment in solemn assembly every time; elders and youths were not left out in praying for God to re-take Akwa Ibom State.

By 2015, God in his benevolence answered the people’s prayers and handed over the state to a Christian as governor, a Deacon of Qua Iboe Faith, Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel. Since may 29, 2015 that Deacon Emmanuel was sworn-in as Governor, kidnapping stopped; political killings stopped; cult activities in secret and open places reduced; sleeping in the bush by innocent residents stopped; children abduction even in the church stopped; killings and dismembering of opponent’s mothers stopped; political raping stopped and the declaration of Akwa Ibom State as a flash point ended. Glory be to God!

It was therefore, a very strange story that Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun Local Government Areas of the State in the Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District where the former Governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio hails from, have been enmeshed in cult clashes leading to kidnapping, killing, rape, arson and complete breakdown of law and order.

As the governor of the state, Deacon Emmanuel has his security reports on minute basis and did not hide the content of the reports of Etim Ekpo/Ukanafun crises when he visited the area to donate relief materials to the victims when he declared “ the cult crises are being sponsored” and quickly ordered the state police command to swing into action in order to “put a stop to this nonsense killing of innocent citizen”

The Akwa Ibom State police command led by the state commissioner of police, CP Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi quickly swung into action. The successful police actions in the two local government areas which have led to the death of key principal actors of the heinous activities and arrest of many kidnappers, armed robbers, murderers, looters, rapist and other criminals have received commendations from the people of the state and beyond.

The Etim Ekpo/Ukanafun crises was seen by many as an litmus test to the police especially as the 2019 general  elections are around the corner and the police proved their mettle and stood out victorious. The police in their release observed that in the past two years, Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun Local Government areas have witnessed upsurge in criminality and brigandage due to the activities of the notorious criminal group led by Akaninyene Jumbo a.k.a Iso Akpafid. Joint operations of the security agencies in the state led to the death of Iso Akpafied on January 15, 2018, “the people’s jubilation that followed was however cut short by the emergence of a wicked and brutal self-crowned successors to Iso Akpafid who adopted the title, ‘stainless’. Successively, stainless led other hoodlums on a revenge mission and unleashed terror on Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun Local Government Areas by killing, maiming, raping, kidnapping, issuing of threat letters and burning of houses indiscriminately”.

Disturbed by this ugly development, the security agencies in the state re-strategized and mounted massive operations against the criminal gang. This led to the arrest of many of the hoodlums who in spite of numerous appeals refused to surrender their weapons and embrace peace, “our efforts received a boost with the death of the current and most brutal gang leader, known as ‘stainless’ by his victims but whose real name is Isaac but known to the security community and close aides as ‘baggy’ was short, after serious exchange of gun fire. This effectively bringing to an end the reign of terror of Iso Akpafid and his Lieutenants in Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun. We have chosen to parade his corpse to demystify his invisibility and re-assure the people of Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun of their safety to encourage those who have fled the area to return home”.

On many occasions too, the command has made many successes not only in Etim Ekpo and Ukanafun but in all parts of Akwa Ibom state as the command keeps briefing the press almost on a daily basis as a result of the police numerous success stories recorded against crime and criminalities. Still on Etim Ekpo / Ukanafun crises, the police recently rescued nine kidnapped victims including and INEC staff who was kidnapped in June this years, as well as the rescue of many members of the Apostolic Faith Nkek who were kidnapped while having their tarry and others also kidnapped at their different homes.

Etim Ekpo /Ukanafun crises was seen as an acid test to the police on how prepared the command is towards the forth coming 2019 General Elections particularly in the State, but the state police command has proven to be prepared for the elections duties. Political thugs are therefore warned to repent as the rebranded police in the state under CP Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi would not hesitate to show them where they belong.

In a recent development, the Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom State Command after the successful story has granted amnesty to those criminal elements who have flee to unknown destinations for lives to surrender their guns. In a press statement dated September 21, 2018 christened, ‘silencing the gun’, the Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom State Command, CP Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi ordered the criminals to, “assemble at Central School, Ikot Akpankuk, Ukanafun, from Saturday 22nd September, to Wednesday 26th September, 2018 between the hours of 8am and 6pm daily for surrendering of arms and documentation. It is hoped that this gesture will lead to complete reconciliation, rehabilitation and reintegration of the aggrieved youths and pave the way for the government to develop the affected communities”.

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