Abia Govt reacts to killing in Aba today

The statement below is from the Abia State Ministry of Information, reegeidng the killing of a man in Aba, by security operatives:

On the sad loss of life at Uratta Junction

Earlier today, some unidentified persons tried to confront security agents who arrested a tricycle operator that was illegally carrying passengers at Uratta Junction of Enugu – Port Harcourt Highway.

When the tricycle operator was arrested and taken to a police station, the assailants quickly spread rumours that he had been killed by security agents.

(See the picture of the reportedly killed tricyclist)

Meanwhile, the unidentified persons quickly mobilized a mob under the false guise that the tricycle operator was dead and attacked security agents and innocent people around the area. Reports reaching us has it that a passing security patrol team was attacked by the same mob and in response one person was shot dead as pictured below.

While we continue to call on security agents enforcing the current lockdown in the state to ensure they follow all service regulations regarding use of firearms in internal security operations and, indeed, condemn all extra-judicial killing of unarmed citizens, it is also unacceptable for hoodlums to organize themselves into mobs to try to burst the necessary lockdown or overawe armed security agents that are performing their lawful duties.

Nobody needs to die if we all do what is expected of us at this time and always. The decision to lockdown our state is one made to save the lives of our people and we perfectly understand how a people that are used to working very hard to take care of themselves and their families will feel being compelled, as a matter of necessity, to sit at home and do nothing.

Yet, the lockdown remains a sacrifice we must all make if we hope to remain safe from COVID-19 and come out of its socioeconomic effects as soon as practicable. We strongly advise all Abians to, please, stay at home as we are currently tracking some suspected individuals who sneaked into our state from neighboring states in the period of the lockdown. We wish to call on citizens to report anyone who sneaks into our state from any neighboring state through 0700 2242 362 for rapid response.

Please stay away from the streets unless you wish to restock between Saturday and Sunday before Monday, April 20, 2020, when another lockdown will commence in the state to enable us do the needful to secure and protect Ndi Abia. No matter what, do not leave your house without wearing a face mask and remember to wash your hands regularly, use original hand sanitizers and maintain social distance.

Regarding the individual who lost his life today, we sincerely sympathize with the family, and the Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, has directed the State Commssioner of Police, CP Ene Okon, to thoroughly investigate the circumstances leading to the loss of the precious life and swiftly bring anyone found culpable to justice.

Finally, we strongly advise all citizens against confronting security agents for any reason at all. We have long set up a monitoring team that is reporting on the activities of all those enforcing the lockdown, and rather than confront armed security agents, please call 07088877797 to report your observations and we will take it from there.

Thank you.
-John Okiyi Kalu, Commissioner for Information.

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