From: TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Residents of Diobu area of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, now live in fear, following a purported letter from a gang criminals to the community.
The people residing in Ehediohanma, Obidianso and Etchwe Streets disclosed, on Thursday, that they received a letter from the gang who had been terrorising the area.
The residents also stated that the gang said they would rob the streets of Mile 2, Diobu all through December, and also threatened to unleash terror to any group that tried resist their operation.
The visibly panicky residents, in collaboration with Diobu Vigilance group, on Thursday, staged a walk to the State Government House, requesting for intervention.
Speaking during the walk, Chairman of Diobu Vigilance group, Victor Ohaji, said the group wanted the government to provide them logistics, so that they could be effective in their job.
Ohaji expressed worry about their member that was killed recently by suspected robbers during operations and called on the state government to allow the group bear arms for them to be able to confront criminals.
In the words of Ohaji, “They should licence us because the criminals we are facing have arms and we do not so we are always at risk trying to provide security for our people.”
Another resident, Nelson Okoro, expressed: “I was born in Diobu. For long now, criminals do not allow us rest. We have not been sleeping at all because of criminals. Restaurants and other businesses hardly operate at night because the boys come out at will and terrorise people.
“We are having small relief now because of this vigilance group that came up. The one that is threatening us now is a letter that the criminals sent to us, informing us that ending of November and throughout December, that we will not rest. We are now living in fear.”
Okoro urged the State Government to heed to the demands of the vigilance group to enable them to defend the area during the period stated by the robbers and beyond.
The group, who arrived at the Government House at about 11:00a.m, stayed there for over two hours as no government official came out to address them on their demands. Many of them left the Government House in frustration.