KOWA Party has condemned the killing of a 10-year old Somtochukwu Mbanusi allegedly by agents of Imo State government who had come to forcefully demolish the Eke Ukwu Owerri Market in Owerri while the boy was trying to protect his parents’ property.
KOWA Party made this known in a statement issued by its National Secretary, Comrade Mark Adebayo, saying it condemned unequivocally and in the strongest possible terms what it described as government-backed armed banditry that claimed innocent lives.
The party also described as irresponsible and callous comments of the Imo State government in the aftermath of the coldblooded murder especially of an innocent minor who committed no crime, even as it called on the Human Rights/Civil Society Community to urgently rise up in unison and take necessary actions.
“We condemn unequivocally and in the strongest possible terms this government-backed armed banditry that claimed innocent lives, and the irresponsible and callous comments of the Imo state government in the aftermath of the coldblooded murder especially of an innocent minor who committed no crime.
“In a Gestapo-like onslaught, the Eke-Ukwu Owerre Market was ferociously and fatally attacked by the state government’s environmental agency backed by heavily-armed thugs, military and police personnel that reportedly led to the loss of lives.
“We call on the Human Rights/Civil Society Community to rise up in unison and take necessary actions, as a matter of urgency, to bring to book all culprits involved in this dastardly crime no matter how ‘highly’ placed,” the party said.
This was just as KOWA Party called on Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha, to tender unreserved apology to the people of the state and ensure that he takes immediate steps to pay adequate compensations to the victims starting with a minimum of one hundred million Naira only to the family of each dead victim.
Speaking further, KOWA expressed grave shock at what it described the “persistent wave of indiscriminate demolition exercises” being carried out across the country by state governments.
According to the party, many state governors, who promised the people during electioneering campaigns that they would embark on people-oriented projects have suddenly resorted to aggressive anti-people and anti-poor policies that further impoverished the already pauperized majority of Nigerians.
It said this was especially with regard to destroying homes and businesses of the masses under the guise of development, beautification, road expansion, and the so-called megacity.
KOWA listed Lagos, Osun, and Ogun state governments, among others as being perhaps, the worst culprits in perpetration of such act.
“It is a crime against humanity to forcefully relocate a people and destroy their means of livelihood under whatever guise without providing affordable and accessible alternatives for them.
“This evil trend has been gaining currency across the country for some time now and it is time to stop it by a collective peoples’ action(s). Infrastructure and environmental beautification cannot take precedence over the fundamental wellbeing of the people.
“In most states where markets are destroyed, the markets subsequently built to replace them are made so costly as to be inaccessible by those who originally do business there. Same thing for houses built by government which the people cannot afford.
“It is for that reason that there are many desolate markets and housing estates in Lagos and other states only useful for rodent, reptiles, and criminal hideouts.
“As a political Party founded on a solid ideology of Social Democracy, KOWA Party believes that government policies must not be to the disadvantage of the people who elected that government nor be a punitive return on their democratic investment. Sensitive policies and projects that affect the livelihood and habitation of a people must be implemented with extreme caution through painstaking community engagement processes and dialogue.
“KOWA Party stands with the people of Imo State in these dark hours of what can best be termed government terrorism. We offer to extend free legal services to all the victims and their families. We call on the Imo State governor to tender unreserved apology to the people of Imo State and ensure that he takes immediate steps to pay adequate compensations to the victims starting with a minimum of one hundred million Naira only to the family of each dead victim. This is without prejudice the prosecution of government and security agencies – including government-backed militias – that partook in that murderous attack against the people of Imo State.
Follow us on Twitter at @thesignalng
Copyright 2017 SIGNAL. Permission to use portions of this article is granted provided appropriate credits are given to www.signalng.com and other relevant sources.
Read More From SIGNAL