The unwholesome activities of some men of the Nigerian Army who have formed the habit of subjecting members of the civil populace in the state to corporal punishments, and most times, extortion of money for no just cause has reached the Government of Abia State.
This is more prevalent along the Bende – Umuahia Road, Ohafia township and within Aba and its environs.
These acts are not only illegal and extremely provocative, they are also capable of triggering off some form of civil unrest in the state which can distort the peaceful atmosphere we have worked very hard to put in place in the state.
While the State Government has always indicated its preparedness to cooperate with all security agencies in their lawful operations within the State, we shall not condone a situation where the presence of the Army in the State becomes a platform to assault the basic rights of our people and subject them to inhuman and degrading treatments without any lawful excuse.
The Commander of the 14 Brigade, Ohafia and indeed all Heads of Army formations in the State are, by this notice, requested to closely monitor the activities of their men in the field and ensure that these untoward practices are stopped at once.
The Government of Abia State shall no longer condone this unwarranted assault on the people of the State. Our people, as law abiding citizens, are fully deserving of their basic freedoms and fundamental rights to life, personal liberty and dignity of the human person. These rights are guaranteed under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the same law from which the Army derives its authority, and these rights can only be tampered with in accordance with laid down legal procedures and not according to the whims and caprices of individual Army officers.
Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, Phd.
Governor of Abia State.