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…Reveals Army/Military, Police Killed 700 Unarmed Civilians, Disappeared 220, Burned Down 600 Homes and Sacked 18,000
It had been found by the International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety) that the six identified state actor and non state actor armed entities troubling Eastern Nigeria have jointly been responsible for 1,710 unarmed civilian deaths and 1,800 abductions in Jan-Dec 2022.
All the affected victims are members of sedentary/indigenous Eastern Christian population with high vulnerability to harm, threat of death or death as against their Eastern pastoral/non indigenous counterparts especially Muslims with least vulnerability to harm, threat of death or death.
The state actor armed entities troubling the Eastern Nigerian Christian population and their defenseless properties are made up of personnel and high commands of the Nigerian security forces deployed in the East including Army/Military, Army-allied Ebubeagu Militias, Nigeria Police Force’s IRT, STS, CTU, Anti Cult, Bunkering, Robbery and Kidnapping crack squads and the Spy Police specializing in arrest of civilians and their long detention outside the law as well as custodial torture and other inhuman and degrading treatments or punishments.
These ‘state actor armed entities’ have become ‘criminal entities’ by abandoning their laid down securitization and policing operational codes including Rules of Engagement to engage in uncontrollable murderous and barbarous conducts including indiscriminate stigmatization, ethnic and religious profiling, class criminalization and wanton destruction of civilian lives and properties including indiscriminate burning down or destruction of unarmed civilian homes and other properties.
They have also found to have remotely, if not openly aided and abetted murderous and genocidal activities of the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen/other Jihadists and counterfeit the violent activities of the mainstream self determination agitators and their security outfit with intents to divert public attention and internationally blackening and criminalizing them.
Strong fingers have also been pointed at them in areas of killings and abductions by street and ethno-religious criminal entities for purposes of criminal enterprise and state jihadism.
Military, Police Killed 700 Civilians, Arrested 1,100 And Burned Down 600 Civilian Houses
The deployed military and police in the East had between January and December 2022 crudely, barbarously and atrociously killed 700 civilians and arrested 1100. Out of the 1100 civilian arrests, not less than 220 or 20% were abducted and disappeared without traces by soldiers and policing crack squads.
The named security agencies perpetrated the above outside the law and modern operational ethics and codes. Those arrested by soldiers were also found to have run the high risk of never coming back alive for eternity.
Among the 220 victims of disappearance, between 50 and 60 are likely to have been killed in military and policing captivity. From various accounts recorded by Intersociety including the Obigbo Army war-grade attack of Oct-Nov 2020 in Rivers State, out of every five unarmed civilians arrested by soldiers, four run the high risk of never returning to their families alive.
Soldiers of the Nigerian Military had also in 12 months of 2022 burned down or destroyed no fewer than 600 defenseless civilian homes worth billions of naira and sacked over 18,000 from their ancestral homes. In 20 months of Oct 2020 and June 2022, over 1,400 houses were burned down or destroyed by the military and 51,000 civilians rendered homeless.
The Nigerian Military particularly the Army had never arrested or shot and killed a single Jihadist Fulani Herdsman in the Region in 2022, if not since 2016.
Fulani Jihadists Slaughtered 410 Easterners And Abducted 600 In Jan-Dec 2022
The Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and other jihadists militarily aided to invade and occupy forests, bushes, farmlands and strategic roads and their bypasses in the East since 2016, have been responsible for not less than 410 open and captivity killings and 600 abductions since the beginning of January 2022.
From several investigations carried out by Intersociety and severally published, 260 of the slain Eastern Christians and non Muslim others met their death in open unprovoked and unwarranted attacks by the jihadists using automatic rifles, machetes and other weapons of death while the remaining 150 deaths occurred in jihadist captivity involving those abducted and held captive, later killed and dumped to decompose at bush or forest paths.
Enugu State is the worst hit with no fewer than 160 deaths out of the 260 open killings. The Eha-Amufu in Isiuzo LGA of the State is the worst hit community with 90-100 deaths.
As much as 70 defenseless lives have been lost in Eha-Amufu communities of Ebor, Umujiovu, Mgbuji and Agu-Amede in Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen attacks that occurred in less than one month on 21-23 Nov 2022, 8-10 Dec 2022 and 18th Dec 2022.
The 2022 Jihadist Herdsmen attacks in the area started on 6th January 2022; recording not less than seven attacks in all. In the Sunday, 18th Dec 2022 attack by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen, not less than seven local Christians were killed and scores injured or missing.
According to Sahara Reporters, “32 persons were killed in ten days of 8-18 Dec 2022 in Ebor Community alone”.
The Sahara Reporters’ account continued thus “seven days ago after the 8th Dec attack, some soldiers visited the war-torn communities of Mgbuji, Umujiovu, Ebor and Agu-Amede and the newly brought leader of the drafted soldiers, Lt. JC Ibe from Imo State assured the locals of adequate security henceforth and pleaded with those that fled the communities to return home, unfortunately when those who fled had started returning home on account of assurances from the indigenous Army commander (Lt JC Ibe), he was surprisingly removed and moved to Uzo-Uwani and replaced by one Capt Idris MP. Regrettably, the Sunday’s (18th Dec 2022) attack took place barely 48 hrs after Capt Idris assumed duty in Eha-Amufu and also disappeared soldiers from the area till date”.
Till date, not only that soldiers of the Nigerian military and personnel of the Nigeria Police and their commanders have done nothing to prevent and curb the attacks, they are also found to have concentrated in raiding innocent Igbo communities for “IPOB/ESN hunts” in addition to searching for locals or local vigilantes with Dane guns and other non-prohibited firearms use in hunting and self defense for purpose of disarming them and making their communities highly vulnerable for Jihadist Herdsmen invasion and attacks.
The three cases in point are recent Army invasions recorded in Obeagu and Nkalaha Communities in Ishielu in Ebonyi State and Okigwe in Imo State. The invasions left several civilian homes and other defenseless properties razed or burned down beyond repair.
In the area of Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen’s captivity killings in Eastern Nigeria, particularly the South-East, Abia State and its Umunneochi and Uturu areas accounted for not less than 90 of the 150 jihadist hideout killings. The Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and other jihadists also accounted for not less than 600 abductions since January 2022, out of which 150 were killed in captivity.
For more details on recent Eha-Amufu Jihadist Fulani attacks and names of the slaughtered victims, click here: , https://alicestarr399.wixsite.com/alicestarrblog/post/suspected-fulani-herders-again-attack-eha-amufu-killing-seven-and-sacking-villages
State Armed Counterfeit Agitators And Others Abducted 1000 Easterners And Killed 600
Eastern Nigeria was also investigated and found to have been flooded and troubled by Government backed armed counterfeit agitators and “Government Unknown Gunmen” with strong roots in Ebonyi and Imo States. The armed counterfeit agitators/”Government Unknown Gunmen” and their terror activities are part of strongly suspected Nigerian State false labeling and ethnic profiling measures to counterfeit the violent activities of the Eastern Security Network; a counter jihadist armed group raised in Dec 2020 by a leading self determination group (IPOB).
The Nigerian State backed armed counterfeit agitators/“Government Unknown Gunmen” and their atrocious conducts are strongly suspected to have evolved from those behind “Ebubeagu militia formative experiment”.
Ebubeagu Militia was remotely raised in April 2021 by Nigerian State to counter ‘the Eastern Security Network’. Since then, the Militia outfit has been linked to sundry conduct atrocities including political terrorism and aiding jihadists’ incursion and activities in the East.
There also seems to be a symbiotic atrocity conduct relationship between Ebubeagu, Military/Police and Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen/other jihadists wrecking havoc in Eastern forests, bushes and farmlands.
Since January 2022, the Nigerian State backed armed counterfeit agitators, “Government Unknown Gunmen” and armed street criminal entities hiding in forests and bushes have jointly abducted at least 1000 defenseless persons and killed 600; out of which armed counterfeit agitators/”Government Unknown Gunmen” took responsibility for 300 abductions and 200 deaths.
The armed counterfeit agitators also targeted security personnel on duty for attack and out of 300 abductions, about 100 deaths occurred in their captivity hideouts as against 200 civilian deaths recorded in their open attacks. The largely forest/bush-base street violent criminal entities are found to have accounted for 300 of the 600 civilian deaths and 600 of the 1000 abductions while Government armed agitators/”Government Unknown Gunmen” took responsibility for the remaining 400 abductions. Most of the 300 deaths occurred in the captivity hideouts of bush/forest-base ‘street criminal entities’ in which out of every ten civilians abducted, three died in the captivity hideouts of the abductors.
Six State Actor And Non-state Actor Criminal Entities Troubling Eastern Nigeria
Intersociety had in its various reports on insecurity and its breeders in the East identified 6 (six) armed entities creating and heightening insecurity and other unsafe conditions including wanton destruction of defenseless civilian lives and properties to include (1) deployed military and policing personnel and their commanders, (2) militarily aided Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and other Jihadists operating in Eastern forests, bushes, farmlands and major roads and their bypasses, (3) Government backed armed counterfeit agitators, (4) Nigerian Army-allied Ebubeagu militias, (5) political death squads/“Government-Unknown Gunmen” and (6)forest/bush-base ‘street criminal entities’ involved in crimes against persons and properties: crimes of abduction, armed robbery, cyber robbery, sexual violence, ritualism, cultism, etc.
It was further investigated and found that the seventh armed entity (ESN) previously fingered in attacks on security personnel, government facilities and violent enforcement of sit-at-home, has scaled down same following intervention of the IPOB’s legal representatives during their parleys with their client/IPOB Leader.
Calling For Massive Transfer Of Senior Military And Police Officers Out Of The East
Intersociety’s recent investigations have revealed that the East is under the siege of state actor security without local contents; sobriquet “state actor insecurity or terrorism”; to the extent that the Region is being offered corrupted and biased securitization.
It has also been observed that the deployed security forces and their commanders in the East have earned notoriety in using corrupted, concocted and biased intelligence on insecurity in the East. These are in addition to ethnic profiling, false labeling, class criminalization and stigmatization of defenseless Easterners and turning blind eyes on genocidists and atrocious others such as Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and imported others.
Consequently, as part of finding concrete solution to rising insecurity bedeviling the East particularly the South-East ahead of Nigeria’s all-important Feb 25, 2023 Presidential Poll, there must be congregated and aggregated group and other stakeholders’ pressure on the country’s Military and Police High Commands and the Presidency for massive transfer out of the East of the below listed serving senior military and police officers and others.
There must be 60% Eastern indigenous composition of the High Command cadre military and policing deployments in the East; 20% non Eastern Christians/non Muslims and 20% non Eastern Muslims. The overhauls must be done as a matter of uttermost immediacy and be extended to headships of Spy Police formations in the eleven States of the East 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.
Among the non Eastern Muslim and non Muslim senior military and police officers due 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, Brig Gen M.K. Ibrahim, 82 Division Garrison Commander, 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.
Calling For Dismantling Of 1500 Military And 4000 Police Roadblocks In The East
Part of the recent forensic findings by Intersociety was the uselessness and needlessness of the existing not less than 1500 military and 4000 police roadblocks on Eastern roads and bypasses. Apart from being highly commercialized and converted to extortion racketeering, they are also aiding the rising criminalities in the Region: From extortion, abduction, ransom payments, captivity killings, sexual violence, ritualism, cultism, counterfeiting and politicization of self determination agitation, political violence, open killings, communal raids, house burnings, oil bunkering, trafficking in persons, trafficking in drugs and trafficking in illicit arms; carjacking, armed robbery to revenue touting, etc.
In our recent study of 81 Igbo communities playing host to military and policing patrols or roadblocks or occupation, the areas were found to have recorded highest concentration of the criminalities and their perpetrators highlighted above. Therefore, there must be immediate dismantling of the existing 1,500 military and 4000 police roadblocks in the Eastern States of Edo, Delta, Anambra, Imo, Enugu, Abia, Ebonyi, Cross River, Rivers, Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom.
Emeka Umeagbalasi, B.Sc., M.Sc.
Board Chair @ Intersociety
Obianuju Joy Igboeli Esquire, LL.B, BL
Head, Civil Liberties and Rule of Law @ Intersociety,
Chidinma Udegbunam Esquire, LL.B, BL
Head, Campaign and Publicity Department @ Intersociety