Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Youths of the Anioma community in Delta North Senatorial District have condemned the renewed wave of cult violence in Asaba, the Delta State capital.
The youths under the aegis of Anioma Youth Forum, Worldwide (AYF-W) said violent cult clashes have claimed several in the last few days within Asaba, adding that the situation has terrorised residents.
They said the present rate of insecurity occasioned by cult clashes in the State capital called for more concern against the backdrop that Asaba is host to top security architecture, and wondered what could be the fate of those outside the state capital if Asaba could be so mesmerised.
In a statement by its national publicity secretary, Elvis Ekwukwo, the group called on the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration and security agencies to redouble its efforts in curbing the rate of insecurity across the State.
AYF-W expressed fears that if not urgently curtailed, the clashes would degenerate into ‘a massacre thereby forever leaving an indelible dent on the image of the present administration of Dr Ifeanyi Okowa and the headship of the present security agencies in the State.’
The statement called on the State Government ‘to redouble its efforts in the areas of security, youth empowerment and employment,” saying that the latest killings have only amplified the need for the government to make an improvement to whatever efforts aimed at tackling insecurity and violent crimes in the State.
‘While we resist the temptation of pegging the ugly scenario on joblessness and idleness, the State government must go beyond sloganeering and beautiful mantras by deliberately getting youths off the streets through empowerments and employments in different ways as a way to curb insecurity and criminality,’ it stated.
AYF-W also called on Delta State Police Command and other security agencies ‘to deploy all necessary manpower and intelligence at their disposal to not only bring this madness against the sanctity of human lives to an end but also fish out all those involved and bring them to justice to serve as a deterrent to others who might be encouraged to take the same part in future if there is no visible sign of punishment for such crimes and criminality.’
The statement seized the opportunity to appeal to youths to shun cultism and all forms of crimes, and engage in activities that promote brotherliness, growth and development of the society.
‘Ironically, AYF-W is worried that the youths who are supposed to grow into the leadership of today and tomorrow have allowed themselves to fall prey to the resistible temptations of killing their fellow youths, friends and brothers at a time when they are supposed to be productively engaged in different economic activities for the growth and development of their immediate families, communities, state and the nation at large owing to their engagements in nefarious activities that portend nothing but retrogression in every sense of it,’ the statement added.