By Chinonso Alozie
Owerri – The Commissioner of Police, Imo state, Mr. Chris Ezike, Monday, said that the police has started show of “force” to build public confidence, ahead of the planned sit-at-home order by the Indigenous People of Biafra, in the state.
The CP also described the act as unpatriotic and inciting, through a release issued to newsmen in Owerri, by the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Mr. Andrew Enwerem.
According to the release, “The attention of the Imo State Police Command has been drawn to the statements, claims, publications and posts circulating in the social media by groups who claim to be representing Independent People of Biafra ,IPOB.
“Movement for the Actualization of Sovereign State of Biafra ,MASSOB, and Biafra Independence Movement ,BIM, directing law abiding citizens and innocent Nigerians to sit at home on 30th May, 2017 in remembrance of the struggle for Biafra Independence.
“These publications are not only inciting but represent an unpatriotic and hostile propaganda against the sovereignty of the Nigerian State.
“The Inspector General of Police has already declared the publication and utterances illegal and deliberate attempt to disrupt public peace, safety and security.
“He has accordingly directed all State Commissioners of Police to place their States on red alert and ensure that these unpatriotic elements do not infringe on the rights of other persons and therefore cause a breakdown of law and order.
“He further directed that security officials must be polite, civil, fair but firm in dealing with the situation.
“In consideration of these unfolding circumstances, the Commissioner of Police, Imo State, CP Chris O. Ezike acting in conjunction with heads of other security agencies wish to assure all citizens and residents of the State.
“We have the capacity and capability to protect them. They are advised to go about their lawful business and not to fall prey to the propaganda and directives of individuals or group of persons whose identity remains largely unknown.
“Parents, guardians are advised/counseled to restrain their children and wards from engaging in violent conduct and other acts likely to bring them in confrontation with the law.
“Already, security forces/agencies have begun a Show of Force and other simulation exercise within the metropolis aimed at sensitizing the public and building their confidence that they will be protected.
“Members of the public are advised not to panic when they see such exercise in progress. The State Police Command wishes all Imolites and indeed all Nigerians happy Democracy Day.”