From George Onyejiuwa and Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma has ordered full investigation into Monday’s crisis in Awommamma in Oru East Local Government Area of the State which led to the killing of a soldier and burning of houses and business premises in the community.
The governor condemned the incident which he described as regrettable.
In a statement by the State commissioner for information and strategy, Declan Emelumba, yesterday, governor Uzodimma noted that the incident deserves a better explanation, hence, the order to unravel its remote cause.
The statement reads: “The Imo state Government condemns the murder of a soldier by the so called unknown gunmen. Certainly, this soldier who was on a legitimate duty to ensure free flow of traffic and to protect life and property on the fateful Monday, November 22, did not deserve to die such a gruesome death.
“On the other hand, government deprecates reports of wanton destruction of property visited on the community by aggrieved soldiers. The indiscriminate burning of residential and businesses premises of innocent citizens was not an appropriate response since two wrongs will never make a right. Government has good reasons to believe that there is more to the sad event than meets the eyes.”
Meanwhile, the governor has advised both parties to exercise utmost restraint and maintain the peace while the investigation lasts.
“Government appreciates the enormous sacrifice by security agencies with the attendant risks, to keep lmo safe for all law abiding citizens. Equally, government restates its charge to security agencies in the state to always abide by the rules of engagement as spelt out by their services while carrying out their legitimate assignments.
“On the other hand, communities are advised to always cooperate with security agencies to track down and arrest criminals in their midst.
Finally, government extends its heartfelt condolences to the family of the dead soldier, while deeply sympathising with the victims of the crisis.
Government will take immediate measures to ameliorate their losses while, at same time, ensuring that such an ugly incident does not recur,” governor Uzodimma assured.