From Obinna Odogwu, Awka
Anambra Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, yesterday, ordered security agents in the state to ‘put down’ any herdsman wielding AK47 rifle as such a person is an armed robber posing as a herdsman.
He said that people masquerading as herdsmen were the ones terrorising, raping and killing innocent people in the state; and therefore should be treated as criminals which they are.
The governor gave the order during a security meeting held at Prof. Dora Akunyili Women’s Development Centre, Awka. It was attended by the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Adamu Mohammed, represented by DIG Joseph Egbunike.
He also ordered the headcount of all the herdsmen operating in the state and also barred itinerant herdsmen from coming into the state. He said that there was need to have their basic information for security purposes.
“Last year, we started the census of who really are these herdsmen living with us. January 2020, they were 77. I want the CP and the committee to do a new census. I also want to let you know that I have given clear instruction that after the census, we will never allow itinerant herdsmen to enter Anambra again. This is because we have found out that the people that didn’t pay compensation were the itinerant ones.”
“They are passing by; they don’t belong here; they don’t live here. I also heard about AK47. Any herdsman with an AK47 is an armed robber and should be put down.
“We don’t tolerate carrying of arms by herdsmen in Anambra here. That is clear and we have arrested and prosecuted some. So, any time you sight a herdsman with a gun, appropriately report the fellow because he is not a herdsman.
“In the olden days, we know how they do it. They use sticks to control their cattle. They also use cutlass in case there is a snake to kill. But to move about with guns, is fishy. It is not ordinary. So, we will not allow that.
“We will not allow itinerant herdsmen to pass through Anambra. We will not allow them. They are the people that cause all kinds of trouble because they don’t know the route, they are the people that rape and kill to be able to pass by”, Obiano said.
The governor said that he was passionate about the security of lives and property in the state and that’s why he has so far bought 562 vehicles for security agencies in the state.
“To make sure that you are very efficient, I spent a fortune buying so many vehicles for all of you. Since I became governor, I bought over 562 vehicles for you. And not only that, since the last two and half years, you have been taking fuel free of charge from designated filling stations where the government pays”, he said.
The IGP commended Obiano for his support to the security agencies and encouraged the security agents to step up their fight against criminals in the state. He also cautioned criminals attacking policemen and police facilities saying that the police force would not take that lightly.