Some Akwa Ibom people have hailed Governor Udom Emmanuel for authorising the bombing of Essien Udim Local Government Area in the state.
Under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), Governor Emmanuel is the Chief Security Officer of the state.
The Nigeria Army had carried out military operation on Tuesday, April 7, 2021 in Ntak Ikot Akpan/Ikot Afanga, Essien Udim Local Government Area after some suspected members of Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) terrorised the area, killed some security operatives and set their vehicles ablaze.
The army spokesperson, Mohammed Yerima, a brigadier general, in a statement on Wednesday, April 8, said “The operation was successfully executed and resulted in the dislodgment of the criminals while fleeing hoodlums were neutralised by the Air Component.”
The two persons- radio analysts speaking on Thursday, April 22 in Planet 101.1 FM, Uyo under Peoples Parliament programme were contributing to the deplorable security situation in the country and proffering solutions to the problem.
This is suspected secret cultists numbering more than 100 terrorised the people of Mbiabong Ikot Essien in Uyo Local Government Area, resulting in the death of six persons while robbery suspects who robbed and killed store owner in Mbiabong Itam in Itu Local Government Area were arrested and given jungle justice by some irate villagers.
The analysts who are Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members commended the Governor Emmanuel, for permitting the military to bomb the area to rid Essien Udim of suspected criminals and hoodlums.
Idy Umanah who thanked the governor for not folding his hands in curbing the rising number of criminals in the area, which would have had spiralling effects in the state.
Mr. Umanah known as the leader of Peoples Parliament called on other governors in the country to emulate the example as a way of checking rising number of criminals and bandits in the country.
A radio caller, Mr. Ndifreke Eniang was equally full of praises to the governor as a Chief Security Officer of the state for authorising the military action.
Eniang said the deployment of soldiers has helped to rid the area of hoodlums.
In interview with Straightnews on Thursday, April 22, Comrade Ini Ememobong, Akwa Ibom Commissioner for Information and Strategy, said the Governor has no power to order bombing of the area as he is neither a soldier nor a Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
Ememobong, however, disagreed with the radio analysts, saying the assertions were untrue.
Findings by Straightnews show that prior to the military operation, Governor Emmanuel had held a security meeting with some Essien Udim political elders and other security chiefs.
”At the meeting, the elders exempted some villages and reduced the number to face aerial onslaught to 12,’’ an anonymous source told Straightnews.
Recall that four officers were killed while were still missing after the attack, the state police public spokesperson, SP Odiko MacDon, confirmed.
It was alleged that several people were killed during ground operation and an aerial bombardment by troops.
The Chairman of Essien Udim, Anthony Luke, said in a statement that nine communities were “seriously” affected while three were ”partially’’ affected by the security crisis in the local government area.
Property worth millions of Naira were destroyed in the area while the actual number of persons killed in the air bombardment were not ascertained.
More than 5,000 persons from the affected villages are living as refugees in three designated centres in the area while the bombed villages are desolate.