Friday, January 21

Our 71-year old monarch can’t spend Christmas in captivity – Anambra community cry out

By: Awesome Ekene

People of Ogwuaniocha community in Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra State have decried government’s alleged abandonment of their abducted traditional ruler, Igwe Oliver Nnaji.

The community had two weeks ago staged a peaceful protest at the government house and State Judiciary Headquarters, calling on Governor Willie Obiano to rescue the monarch from captivity and declare the abductors wanted.

Speaking to newsmen on Friday, fourth son of the monarch, Prince Onyebuchi Nnaji, described as unbelievable government’s ‘helpless’ disposition towards ensuring quick release of his 71-year old father.

He said, “It’s roughly six weeks my father was kidnapped. Despite several efforts we’ve made, including petitioning concerned authorities and placing calls on Local government chairman and state CID, nothing has been done. All we keep getting is ‘we’re on it.

“I really can’t explain the reason behind government nonchalance. As the community with highest number of oil wells, we contributed immensely in assisting the state become an oil producing state.

“On his part, the monarch played major role to ensure this dream comes true. He fights for the government, including ensuring the community delivered APGA at the last governorship election. Yet we don’t know his present condition, whether he’s alive or not.”

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While linking the abduction to resource control which he alleged the suspected abductors wanted to be in control of its funds, Nnaji stressed the need for government’s presence through its security operatives to restore sanity in the community.

“As we speak, there’s a face off between the abductors and the community’s vigilante. The community is more like a desert as residents have fled the town. Other towns are celebrating Christmas while we’re being chased away,” he added.

Also speaking, President, Ogwuaniocha Youth Association, Mr Uchenna Onyedi, alleged that the gang behind the abduction had been terrorising people and burning houses.

“If this act of negligence continues, we will hold the state government responsible for the ongoing destruction in our community,” he said.

Reacting, Commissioner for Information, Mr. C-Don Adinuba expressed worry over the incident, assuring that efforts were still on to rescue the monarch.

“It’s not right to discuss security measures being taken to trace the royal father’s whereabouts. As an individual, I feel pained by what’s going on in the community.

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“I advise the youths to shun every form of violence as that will only be counter productive.”

On his part, Police spokesperson, Tochukwu Ikenga assured that no stone would be left unturned to rescue the monarch.

“Search us still ongoing, We’ve combed all hideouts where we got tip off that he might be kept, but unfortunately, he was not there.

“But be rest assured that the Police are not resting on their oars. No stone would be left unturned to ensure the traditional ruler was rescued.”

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