Determined to rid Rivers State of cultists and kidnappers, Governor Nyesom Wike has directed the immediate demolition of property acquired through crimes in line with the state’s anti-kidnapping and cultism law.
Governor Wike reiterated his offer of amnesty to cultists and kidnappers who submit their arms to the state security agencies and commit themselves to honest living.
Wike, in company of soldiers and policemen, yesterday supervised the demolition of the home and hideout of notorious suspected cultist and kidnapper in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, Munachim Ihunwo, in Rumuolumini community.
The governor stated that his administration has zero tolerance for cultism and kidnapping, and maintained that any suspect arrested would face the full weight of the law.
He stressed that the arrested suspected cultist and his boys had been terrorising Obio/Akpor, creating insecurity in the commercial zone of the state.
“The Rivers State government has taken over the criminal hideout of these arrested cultists. After the ongoing demolition of their hideout, we will build a police station and mini barracks in this location. We have also taken over the home of the kingpin that we have also demolished.
“This is to let members of the public know that this administration is serious. We will not allow anyone to cause insecurity in this state. We will chase criminals to their hideout. Let them submit their arms and we will give them amnesty.”
The governor declared that the state government will continue to demolish the homes and hideouts of confirmed cultists and kidnappers to serve as a deterrent to would-be cultists and kidnappers.
Commending the combined team of soldiers and policemen for effectively fighting criminals in the state, he appealed to the people of the state to continue to cooperate with security agencies by providing relevant information that would lead to the arrest of hardened criminals.
Briefing the governor Wike the operation that led to the capture of the suspected cult kingpin, Lieutenant Colonel AC Unaogu informed that Ihunwo ran a camp with 200 armed criminals, noting that the security agencies were working round the clock to locate the camp.
Colonel Unaogu said that the cult kingpin and his boys were captured in their hideout which had a shrine with human skulls.
Governor Wike therefore directed the special adviser on Lands, Anugbum Onuoha, to initiate the process for the government to acquire the lands hitherto owned by the suspected cultists.
Meanwhile, Rivers State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has said the promise by Governor Wike to work out amnesty for those who might have taken to crimes and cultism but were now willing to lay down their arms was a step in the right direction.
The state PDP Chairman, Hon Felix Obuah stated this while appraising the security situation and the efforts of the governor to restore peace across the state.
Obuah believed that the extension of the olive branch by the governor was borne out of genuine spirit and love for the state, but more importantly, programmed for the youths to tow the path of hard work and legitimate means of livelihood as the surest way of guaranteeing their future.
He urged those involved to take advantage of Governor Wike’s magnanimity to embrace peace by surrendering their guns and joining hands with civil society to build a better state, and a peaceful society.
Obuah recalled with excitement that the federal government’s amnesty programme which had proven to be successful was first conceived by the former PDP-led government of Rivers State, stressing that the state government by its planned amnesty programme might be on the threshold of making history again.
“The PDP leadership in the state is excited and will do anything possible to encourage and support every positive step that will bring about relative peace in our polity, so as to give meaning to all the development efforts of government.
“We only pray that those concerned will see reason and embrace the laudable gesture of the state government,” he said.

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