By Chinonso Alozie
OWERRI—THE Imo State Commissioner of Police, Chris Ezike, has cried out over the menace of cultism in schools in the state and asked parents and other stakeholders in the communities to assist the police in curbing the ugly development.
Ezike spoke to South East Voice against the backdrop of reports of increasing cultism in primary, secondary and tertiary schools across the South East geopolitical zone. In some of the secondary schools across the zone, some young school girls were arrested for belonging to the White Angel cult group.
The Police commissioner spoke in Owerri, the state capital, after playing host to the alumni of University of Nigeria, Nsukka, UNN, at the state police headquarters. He, particularly, called on the members of the association to join the Imo police as strategic partners in the fight against cultism. “The issue of cultism has characterised the Owerri municipality, and as parents we should be worried, as teachers and professors in the higher institutions we should also be worried.
“Even as citizens and residents we should be worried, and particularly as law enforcement officers we are worried… At the community levels we should be worried, so let us join hands together to archive this,” (eradicate cultism), he said. Ezike, who is also an alumnus of the UNN, however, said that the police had adopted some pragmatic steps to address the issue and other related criminal activities in the state.
“We have adopted two approaches but we will continue to talk and preach. To archive this, we want you to come on board as strategic partners to join the Nigeria police in Imo in this regard, so that we will come out with our blue print and we shall begin to lead advocacies to higher institutions. Let us talk to our students who are on the fringes; on vengeance of cultism and cult related violence.
“We have started advocacy visits to established government institutions, the Imo House of Assembly, traditional institutions and even the wife of the governor, is ever ready to lead this advocacy against cultism. I am also sure that the state House of Assembly is looking into the laws relating to cultism and other related violence and very soon they will start a process to show that we are all prepared to fight cultism, because cultism is the beginning and end of all other forms of criminality,” he further said
Earlier in her remarks, the President of the alumni of UNN, Mrs. Pat Ekennia, said that the association had come to identify with one of their own and promised that the members would work closely with commissioner in the fight against crimes in the state.