There are strong indications that the Nigerian military is disturbed by rising cases of attacks on its personnel by the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, and terrorists in the Southeast.
PRNigeria gathered that the anxiety of the military was heightened after the beheading of a Local Government Chairman in Imo State, on Sunday, by suspected IPOB terrorists who have repeatedly boasted that they won’t allow elections to hold in the southeast zone.
In the video showing the beheading of the Sole Administrator of Ideato North local government area, Mr Christopher Ohizu, the gunmen said “Hope (Uzodinma, the state governor), hope you have seen this man kneeling here.
“You know this man. The way I am killing this man is the way I am going to kill you. You think hiring soldiers will save you.
“We are a group of people that see what is happening in the land and we are saying no. We must fight to make sure that Biafra is restored. Biafra must be restored. As far as the Eastern region is concerned no election.”
The video that went viral saw Ohizu whose hands were tied backward in a thick forest putting on only trousers and was filmed by the gunmen while slaughtering him.
PRNigeria recalls that even after collecting a ransom of N6 million from the victim’s family, they also set Ohizu’s houses ablaze.
The Nigerian Military top brass is not only concerned about the atrocities being perpetrated by unknown gunmen in the Southeast but the disturbing attacks and abductions of security personnel in the region.
A military intelligence operative who pleaded anonymity told PRNigeria that drastic measures might be taken to curtail the excesses of the terrorists.
“It is disturbing that while our troops are working to ensure peace and security in the society, the gunmen not only abduct their own people they also attack our personnel and destroy other facilities…
“Very soon, we will unveil strategies on curtailments that will address the current embarrassing situation once the people in the affected communities cooperate with us,”
Early in the second quarter of 2022, suspected IPOB/ESN members intercepted two army couples who were heading for their traditional wedding in Imo State.
Master Warrant Officer A.M Linus and his wife-to-be were not only naked and gruesomely killed but filmed during the dastardly act by the suspected ESN members.
Similarly, in November, last year, a rating of the Nigerian Navy, OSFM Ibrahim, was kidnapped by IPOB terrorists, in Anambra State. Ibrahim, PRNigeria (then) gathered, was abducted on his way back to Port Harcourt. He was said to be returning to the Rivers State capital after visiting his sick mother.
Then, on January 16, 2023, PRNigeria reported that some unknown gunmen abducted an operative of the Nigerian Navy at the Upper Iweka area in Onitsha, also in the same Anambra State.
The naval personnel, identified as Lt. IS Ozuowa, was kidnapped alongside some civilians, whose number could not be ascertained at press time.
Recalled that one Lieutenant PP Johnson, a female officer, was on Monday, 26 December 2022, abducted by IPOB terrorists while visiting her grandmother in Aku-Okigwe in Imo state.
This was shortly after Johnson completed her Cadet training and was subsequently commissioned as a Lieutenant into the Nigerian Army.
Reacting to the abduction of Lt. Johnson, then, Brig. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, Director of Army Public Relations, said: “It is instructive that the officer’s circumstances as a woman and a Nigerian citizen of South Eastern extraction did not dissuade her abductors from dehumanizing her in their mindless attempt to commit atrocities under the guise of fighting for Biafra.
“This evidently is another pointer to the myriads of crimes being unleashed by IPOB/ ESN on Ndigbo, the very people they claim to be fighting for their emancipation”.
The army spokesperson maintained that IPOB/ESN are terrorists, masquerading as freedom fighters and do not deserve the support of anyone, particularly the good people of South East Nigeria.