Following an unrest earlier last week in Ohafia community, Ohafia local government area of Abia State, a group Abia Renaissance Movement, ARM has called on the political class especially in Abia North to stop linking the Senator representing the district, Sen. Orji Uzor Kalu with the incident.
The group expressed displeasure that some individuals who have perennially lost out in political equation in the district due to their unpopularity among the people have resorted to concocting falsehood to score cheap political points.
In a release on Monday, the national president of ARM Chief Nkasinobi Njoku was responding to insinuations from some misguided quarters that Sen. Kalu’s presence in Ohafia had caused the unrest that led to the death of a young soldier and a lady in Ohafia.
Sen. Kalu, former governor of Abia had in the last couple of days embarked on ward to ward assessment and project inspection tour.
The objective is to get a feedback from the constituents and inspect the impact of the projects he has executed in various communities.
He had attracted goodwill among the people while the tour lasted even as they cheer him for his numerous developmental projects in their communities.
Chief Njoku while narrating the incident of Wednesday said the people of Ohafia were in high spirit to receive Sen. Kalu after they had received information that the inspection tour train will land in their community.
According to him, Sen. Kalu had arrived Okon Ohafia from where he had planned to move to other parts of the community.
“He also proceeded to Amangwu, from where he proceeded to Asaga. He drove pass Ebem and headed to Akanu.
“His plan was to return to Ebem, then Elu Ohafia to other places before heading home since that is his route too to Igbere his home.
“While in Akanu at about 4pm, information filtered in that a soldier has been killed by unknown gunmen in Ebem Ohafia.
“Despite security advise, he was insistent on coming to Ebem because of the love of the people he enjoys.
“Akanu had staged a rousing welcome for the Senate Chief Whip, parading their ekpe masquerade which shows the height of reception for a big visitor which Sen. Kalu represents.
“20 gunshot salute was already staged to welcome Sen. Kalu with all the cultural paraphernalia of reception, including the “Ikpa Nzu”. These are clear indications that our people love their Senator and were in high spirit to usher him into the community.
“In response to the killing of their colleague, the soldiers had began an aggressive search for the so called unknown gunmen, a situation which led to sporadic gunshots in Ohafia.
“It was just a coincidence that Sen. Kalu was in the community when that incident happened. He never fueled it, neither was he a target for it.
“Frustrated politicians in Abia North should stop making political capital of the ugly incident and develop a strategy to make themselves relevant among the people instead of engaging in criminal blackmail against the people’s pragmatic representative” he said.
According to Njoku, Sen. Kalu was never at any time held hostage in Ebem, stating that when he arrived at a military check point in Ebem on his way home, he was granted right of way without harassment.
He called on people of the state, particularly Ebem people to be weary of mischief makers whose cardinal aim is to cause problems in Ebem for sinister motives.
He said the situation was fuelled following false and unfounded information being circulated on the social media, expressing sadness over the situation which he said has nothing to do with the Senate Chief Whip.
Chief Njoku said security concerns are not only prevalent in Abia state but Nigeria as a whole, calling on traditional rulers in Ohafia to immediately hold a strategic meeting to curtail incidences of unrest in the local government.
Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu had on Friday issued a statement, assuring immediate action to ensure that normalcy returns.