…. Wants USA, UK, ICC to investigate the killings
Civil rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA), on Tuesday, listed alleged victims of political violence and killings in Ebonyi State perpetrated during the administration of Governor Dave Umahi, especially before, during and after the 2023 general elections.
HURIWA, in a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, asked the international community to probe the political killings and violence and slam extreme sanctions on the perpetrators. HURIWA also wants the international community to slam travel ban on Governor Umahi unless and until he can prove that the killers of these citizens have been arrested and handed over to an unbiased judicial forum for prosecution for murder. It argued that most of these suspicious deaths were politically motivated which is why HURIWA will be writing Amnesty International to also conduct her own separate independent investigation on the alleged executions.
The group said its research team led by a professor of criminology had just returned from Ebonyi where they gathered eyewitness accounts. HURIWA demanded that the commissioner of police in Ebonyi, the state director of the Department of State Services and other relevant military commanders based in Ebonyi who could have stopped these killings but failed should similarly be charged.
HURIWA’s Onwubiko said, “The political intolerance in Ebonyi during Governor Dave Umahi and his All Progressives Congress party reached a crescendo in the buildup to the 2-23 general elections and this was responsible for the withdrawal of our support for Umahi’s Senate Presidency ambition.
“Already, we have drawn up a list of citizens killed before, during and after the 2023 poll in Ebonyi State under the current dispensation and we are asking the USA, UK, AUSTRALIA, Canada, EU and the ICC to ask President Muhammadu Buhari to investigate and those responsible and to prosecute them either in Nigeria or in ICC for crimes against humanity. We are not saying Governor Umahi did the killings but as the Chief security officer of Ebonyi State he is legally obliged to render absolute accounts of all these unwarranted killings during his 8 years regime.
April 4, 2023
Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko
National Coordinator – HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA.
POLITICALLY MOTIVATED KILLINGS IN EBONYI STATE BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER ELECTIONS UNDER THE ADMINISTRATION OF GOVERNOR DAVID UMAHI:
PDP Ezza North LG Chairman killed
On March 18 2023, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chairman for Ezza North Local Government Area of the state, Peter Nweke, was beaten to death during the governorship polls.
Mr Oyibo Nwani, an agent of the Action Alliance (AA) party killed.On March 18 2023, Nwani of Amautu community in Onicha-Igboeze was killed by gunmen at Amautu polling unit of the area during the March 18 governorship election.
Traditional ruler shot dead in Ebonyi
The victim, Igbokwe Ewa, was attacked and killed in his residence on Monday evening. The gunmen, suspected to be political thugs of APC shot dead the chairperson of Ezza North Traditional Rulers Council in Ebonyi State.
Cold-blooded killings in Edda Clan(Afikpo South LGA).
On the 26th of December, 2022, two young men and a police inspector were killed in cold blood when two factions of the All Progressives Congress(APC) engaged in a gun battle. The two factions are led by two prominent sons of Edda community, the APC Chairman, Mr Stanley Okoro Emegha who also doubles as the Chief Security Consultant to the State Government and also the ipso facto General Commander/Founder of EbubeAgu, the security outfit often used by the Umahi administration to terrorize opposition elements in the state. A youth leader in the community identified as Eseni Egwu and Eme Orji, the younger brother to the APC chairperson, were also killed in the clash. A few days later, the pregnant wife of an Ebubeagu Commander, Mr Kalu Çhima Ekuma was shot dead in her home in Amoso Edda, Afikpo South LGA. The woman, Mrs. Orie Kalu Chima died instanly from bullet wounds. She was seven months pregnant with twins. The leader of the other faction in the area is Mr Eni Uduma Chima, immediate Chairman of Afikpo South LGA who was also the APC candidate for the House of Representatives to represent Afikpo North/Afikpo South Federal Constituency.
NELAN Engineers killed
In December 2021, five NELAN Engineers working on the state’s ring road project in Effium disappeared and were later reported killed. Their bodies were later recovered but their leader’s head was severed from the body.
Elder Ihebunandu Okorie and two students of FGCO killed
In 2014, Elder Ihebunandu Okorie, the owner of Zenith International School, Okposi and former Cordinator of Okposi Development Centre who was abducted in the Church premises and murdered by hired killers in 2014, when Umahi was still the Deputy Governor. Two students of Federal Government College Okposi were brutally murdered within the same period.
Prophetess killed in Abakaliki.
On May 12, 2022 a popular prophetess in Ebonyi was found dead in Abakaliki
Keke rider killed in Ebonyi State
On January 23, 2023, A tricycle operator, Mr. Okechukwu Nkwuda, 45, an indigene of Onu Nwakpu village in Igbeagu autonomous community was reportedly stabbed in various parts of his body by yet-to-be identified assassins along Nwezenyi/Ndukabi Road, in Izzi LGA of Ebonyi State. And the man died.
PDP chieftain, Oyibo Nwani, shot dead in Ebonyi
On March 18 2023, a Peoples Democratic Party chieftain and agent in the governorship and House of Assembly elections in Ebonyi State, Oyibo Nwani, was on Saturday shot dead by thugs who stormed his polling unit in the Onicha Local Government Area.
Councillor Ogbonnaya Ugwu murdered.
The Councillor representing Echara ward 2, Okposi community in Ohaozara LGA of Ebonyi State, Mr Ogbonnaya Ugwu, popularly known as Spaco was shot at Court Area of Okposi. His body was pushed into his car and set ablaze.
Monday Idoko and Festus killed.
On the 18th of February 2023, Monday Idoko and Festus of Ohofia and Agba in Ezekoma Development Centre of Ishielu Local Government Area were shot dead.
Prof Benard Odo, APGA candidate’s aides killed
On Thursday, February 2, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Prof Bernard Odoh was ambushed at Okpoto, Ishielu local government council, as he was returning to Abakaliki from a campaign rally. His driver and two orderlies were killed in the attack. Odoh, early in February, also escaped death in an attack in which two police officers attached to him were killed. APGA supporter, Oscar Elom killed. Also, a supporter of APGA in the Ohaukwu Local Government Area of the state, Oscar Elom, was murdered in a similar manner when he was dragged out of his shop at Ngbo and shot in the head.
Those killed in Isuokoma community
“Many people were gruesomely murdered in 2022 in Isuokoma, including the Palace Secretary, Chief Odii Nwachima; the President-General of Isuokoma Town Union, Dr. Ifeanyi Anthony Orji; Alhaji Iyioji, an Islamic cleric from Isuokoma; Chief Augustine Nwadibia, the owner of Galaxy Hotel at Nkwoagu Isu market; among others. “Mr. Henry Ezeani, one of the security aides to High Chief Dr. Ifeanyi Chukwuma Odii, was also murdered in the bloody attack at Galaxy Hotel, Nkwoagu Isu. The Traditional Ruler of Isu community, HRH Ambrose Ogbu and Mrs. Juliana Uzor were also kidnapped in 2022 and they are still missing many months after their abduction. It was alleged that the powers that be in Ebonyi State instigated the killings targeting the supporters of a son of the soil who was running for the Governorship seat in the state on the platform of one of the opposition political parties.
” Violence, killings threat to 2023 elections in Ebonyi
In 2022, hoodlums suspected to be political thugs at a rally in Izzi Local Government Area, attacked Prof Odoh alongside his supporters. It could be recalled that soon after the attack on Odoh in October last year, all governorship candidates under the auspices of Coalition of Frontline Governorship Candidates in Ebonyi State called the attention of the Federal Government to what they described as “ongoing plot to dismantle opposition voices in the state using the Ebubeagu militia.
”In a communiqué jointly signed by Dr. Edward Nkwegu (LP), Chief Ifeanyi Odii (PDP), Chukwuma Nwandugo (AA); Prof. Bernard Odoh (APGA) and Chief Sunday Opoke (YPP), they chronicled instances of attack, abduction and unexplained disappearance of people and called for immediate disbandment of Ebubeagu security outfit, saying it has turned into a political militia. They listed the flogging of civil servants, abduction of LP senatorial candidate for Ebonyi South, Linus Okorie, attacks on the APGA governorship candidate and his supporters, teargasing of Obedient supporters and sudden disappearance of Mr. Uzoma Ani, an aide to Odii, as some of the glaring cases of violent intimidation of the opposition.
Two persons killed in Mkpuma Akpatakpa, Ebonyi
Gunmen on Friday 20th January two persons were killed in Mkpuma Akpatakpa community in the Izzi Local Government Area of the state.
Charles Nwankwo killed
Meanwhile, gunmen have attacked and killed one Charles Nwankwo at Ogboji Ward, in the Ezza North Local Government Area, of the state. The gunmen, according to a source in the area stormed the house around 1 am, on Saturday, and shot him dead.
Gunmen Kill 2 Soldiers, 3 Policemen In Ebonyi
Three policemen were yesterday shot dead and another injured when unknown gunmen attacked policemen at the border checkpoint along the Enugu/Abakaliki expressway.The hoodlums who were said to have operated in two Sienna buses reportedly opened fire on getting to the checkpoint killing three policemen on the spot.
LEADERSHIP learnt that the unknown gunmen earlier killed two soldiers at another checkpoint before they struck at the one at Enugu/Abakaliki Expressway. “Yesterday’s attack by unknown gunmen at Ebonyi/Enugu boundary took place at about 18:08hrs. Three Police personnel of Operation Safer Highway, fatally injured. Later confirmed dead. Hoodlums operated in two sienna vehicles, drove into the Check-point, opened fire on the policemen,” SP Anyanwu said.
LEADERSHIP also gathered that the armed men had before the attack at the Ebonyi/Enugu Boundary checkpoint also attacked another checkpoint at the Idodo axis of the Enugu-Abakaliki Expressway killing two military personnel.
On 18th March, 2023, Thomas Obodo, an NNPP Party agent in Izzi LGA was killed Fred Aliobu, another party agent of NNPP was kidnapped in Ikwo LGA and kept in the forest for some days. The Governorship Candidate of the NNPP in the state , Mr Adoll Awam condemned the “shameful pettiness exhibited by the APC ruling party during the electioneering period in the state. He stated that the election was plagued by irregularities such as failure to use BVAs to upload the election results to the INEC result viewing Portal(IREV) in real time, disenfranchisement of voters, rigging , vote-buying, violence and intimidation, manipulation of election results, under supply of election materials, over-voting, ballot box stuffing and other issues of corrupt practices and non compliance with the provisions of the 2022 Electoral Act.
On Wednesday, 29th March, 2023, a 36-year old man, Elijah Kalu Eni, a native of Nkagbogo Ekoli Edda in Afikpo South LGA was killed at Biata Ekoli Edda. His assailants were apprehended by the Police and taken to the State Police Command in Abakaliki.