Over 1,000 Militants Receive Amnesty In Imo State

militant, NPDC, Delta, PipelinesOver 1000 militants and agitators from oil producing area of Ohaji Egbema and Oguta Local Government Areas of Imo State have laid down their arms following the state government’s decision to grant them amnesty.

The militants, in their numbers, stormed the Government House in Owerri the Imo State capital to hearken to the call of the Imo State, Governor Rochas Okorocha, to drop their arms and embrace peace so the government can find a lasting solution to the underdevelopment and infrastructural decay that has enveloped the region over the years.

The local governments are the two coastal and oil producing areas in the state and are known for being restive.

Militants in the area have allegedly joined their colleagues in other Niger Delta states to blow up oil installations and pipelines since over 7 oil companies operate in the area.

Worried about this continuous economic sabotage and restiveness in the area, the Imo State government has organized a programme to grant pardon to all militants, cultists and agitators in the area to enable them sue for peace and address the challenges facing the area.

Some of the Militants who were given opportunity to speak have reasons for their activities and actions and what they have done in the past.

After deciding to lay down their arms, which comprises of Ak-47 riffles, rocket launchers, pistols, charms, machetes, knives, axes and other dangerous weapons, the youths swore to an oath, administered by the Attorney General of the State, never to go back to the past.

They were also prayed for by clergymen after which some made confessions of their previous misdeeds.

Meanwhile, the Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha, who was pleased with the decision of the youths, pardoned them for their misdeeds and promised to engage them meaningfully as a committee has been set up to look into their agitations.

He also gave a 7-day window for those who are still hiding in the creeks to lay down their arms and be granted amnesty.

Present at the event are the Imo State Commissioner of Police, the Imo State army commander, Director SSS Imo State and other head of security agencies in the state as well as all top Imo State government functionaries.

Suspected Oil Thieves Arrested With Over 65,000 Litres Of Crude Oil

crude oil thieftNine suspects allegedly involved in illegal oil bunkering and illegal transportation of crude oil have been arrested by the Nigerian Army in Imo State.

The arrest was made by the 34 Artillery Brigade Command in Owerri, the capital of Imo State

A spokesman for the Command, Captain Ajemasu Jingina, told reporters that the arrest was made through the command’s operation PULO Shield saddled with the responsibility of curbing illegal oil bunkering, illegal oil theft, pipeline vandalism and kidnapping of oil workers.

According to him, the command was able to intercept four different trucks along Owerri Port Harcourt expressway conveying products containing over 33,000 litres of AGO and crude oil suspected to be gotten from illegal oil bunkering.

Captain Jingina said most of the suspects were arrested along Owerri-Port Harcourt expressway and oil producing Oguta Local Government Area of the state.

He said a truck with registration number ABB 239 XA carting 10,800 litres of substance suspected to be AGO was loaded into a well-constructed metal and concealed with piles of two by four inches woods in order to bit the check of security operatives on the highway.

The Captain also disclosed that the officers of the Command also intercepted a Dangote Sino truck in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State loaded with 22,000 litres of substances suspected to be crude oil.

Some of the suspects maintained that the products were bought legally but concealed in the truck in order not to pay the normal fees and charges on the highway.

Apart from the suspected oil thieves, the Command also paraded suspected kidnappers and some with illegal firearms.

The command has promised to take up these cases and hand them over to the appropriate authorities for further prosecution.

It further called for more support from the public in providing necessary and timely information that would aid in combating crime and other criminal related activities in the state.

Residents In Flood Prone Areas In Imo Advised To Relocate

SEMA Urges Imo Flood Victims To Relocate To Upper LandsResidents and indigenes of Oguta Local Government Area (LGA) living around flood prone areas have been advised to relocate to upper lands where their lives and property will be adequately secured, pending the time the ravaging flood will reduce.

The passionate appeal was issued on Monday by the Executive Secretary of the Imo State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mrs Uche Ezeonyeasi, who visited the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp set up to house some flood victims in Oguta area.

 

She handed over to the displaced persons additional relief materials made available by the State government.

The Imo State government, through the Imo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (ISOPADEC) had earlier provided relief materials to the flood victims.

Mrs Ezeonyeasi, however, noted that since flood was a natural disaster that could not be averted, SEMA had already done several sensitisation for the people of the zone prior to this time.

She disclosed that no lives were lost at the moment, but several homes and farmlands were badly affected.

According to her, the relief materials are to alleviate the sufferings of the flood victims.

The Imo State Deputy Governor, Eze Madumere, also visited the flood victims to sympathise with them and also promised them of the State government’s support and care.

The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) had issued an alert that there would be flood in some particular zones in the country of which Imo State was one of them.

 

Imo Youths Hold Solidarity Rally For Governor Okorocha

Rochas-Okorocha (1)Youths from the oil producing area of Ohaji egbema and Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State have commended the Governor  Rochas Okorocha led government for initiating various youth oriented programmes aimed at engaging youths in the area in meaningful and productive ventures.

Not mindful of the rain drops, the youths made the declaration and pledged their unflinching support to Okorocha led administration at a solidarity rally in government house, Owerri, the state capital on Sunday.

They thanked the Governor for the 500 million Naira Empowerment Trust Fund launched by the State government few months ago and said that the empowerment had helped many youths in the area to do meaningful things with their lives.

They called on the Governor to run for 2nd term in office so as to complete the numerous infrastructural, economical and human developments he had started in the state.

Since the Governor was on a state trip to Abuja, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Sam Onwumuedo, addressed the youths, promising to deliver their message to the Governor on his arrival

Ohaji Egbema and Oguta Local Government are the two oil producing areas in Imo State known for their high restive nature and high level of unemployment. It is, therefore, hoped that the initiative  would help end the restiveness of youth in the area.

‘Gurhu Maharaji’ Devotee Kills Mother For Ritual Purposes

The Imo State police command has arrested a 64-year-old man, Mr. Chimezie Osigweh in whose property a 10-year-old embalmed corpse was found.

Mr. Osigweh, a retired principal and a strong devotee of the Guru Maharaji sect who was alleged to have mysteriously killed his mother 10 years ago, and kept the embalmed corpse of his mother in a large cupboard inside a shrine of a private room in a circumstance depicting ritual practice.

While parading the suspect at his temple in a village called Ezuru Umuagwu in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State, the state Commissioner of Police, Mohammed Katsina, said preliminary investigations revealed that instead of burying the mother the normal way, Mr. Osigweh kept the embalmed body of Mrs. Lucy Osigweh in his temple for ritual purposes where he and other members of his sect used to hold secret nocturnal meetings to enhance their occultic powers.

Mr. Chimezie Osigweh was identified as a retired principal of Community Secondary School, Awa, and a strong member of the Guru Maharaji sect.

He was arrested alongside 2 other worshipers at his temple where he kept the embalmed corpse of his late Mother.

Mr. Osigweh who confessed to be a Guru Maharaji member for 24 years denied that he intentionally killed his mother. He, however, refused to disclose why he kept the mother’s embalmed corpse in the cupboard for 10 years saying it was not what he could openly disclose.

Meanwhile, villagers and family members have said that they suspected Mr. Osigweh of diabolical acts, stating that he had kept noticeable distance from everyone.

They disclosed that he was never married. His relatives who were at the scene of crime said when asked, he would tell lies that the mother travelled to the United States to see his siblings or that she was receiving treatment in the hospital.

The Imo state Police commissioner Mohammed Katsina while speaking to journalists said the Command has started making further investigations into the case and will ensure that they unravel every mystery behind it to the public as soon as they get more information.

In the meantime, the suspect will remain in the police custody and if found guilty, will be charged for first class murder.

Flood: Imo Begins Disbursement of FG’s Intervention Fund

The Imo State Government has commenced the disbursement of the N400 million intervention fund to victims affected by the ill-fated flood disaster in Oguta and Ohaji Egbema Local Government area of Imo State.

During the presentation of cheques to communities affected by the flood at the Ikemba Ojukwu Convention Centre in Owerri, the state capital, Chief of Staff to the Governor of Imo state, Sir Jude Ejiogu noted that part of the money will be used to rehabilitate and relocate some of the families affected by the flood as the government will embark on the construction of community halls and pipe borne water so that all necessary measures will be put in place to ensure that the victims will not be displaced again in case of a re-occurrence in future.
Ejiogu advised the beneficiaries to ensure that they use the money judiciously especially on agriculture.

However, the Chairman of the State Committee on Relief Materials and Commissioner for Health, Mr. Obi Njoku said the sharing was done on categories based on how it affected individuals and communities, to this end, those in category A will receive the sum of N5 million, those in category B will get N3 million, while those in category C and D gets N2 million and N1 million respectively.

Beneficiaries at the event commended the federal and state governments for the kind gesture and for fulfilling their promise after the disaster that ravaged their communities.

Imo state reveals plan to redesign Owerri master plan

The Imo state government has disclosed plans to redesign the Owerri Master plan in order to develop and beautify the state capital to a master piece which can be compared to developed capital cities around the world.

The Commissioner for Lands, Survey and Urban Planning, Mr Uche Nwosu disclosed this to journalist during a news conference in Owerri, the Imo state capital.

He said the Owerri Master plan which has been designed since 1976 has lost its beauty over the years due to the increasing population experienced in the city.

He noted that the plan to redesign the master plan is also to help decongest the city which is experiencing a very heavy traffic.

The beautification of the city, the Commissioner claimed is topmost in the agenda of the Ministry while noting that they have embarked on clearing and demolition of shanties and unwanted building in the city.

He also added that the Ministry of lands have printed new Certificate of Occupancy (C of Os) for land acquisition in the state which will prevent corruption and forging of fake C of Os as well as prevent people from erecting illegal buildings in the city.

Mr Nwosu also disclosed that the state government has approved 50 hectares of land for the construction of Marine University which is a Federal project to be located in Oguta Local government area.