By Dianabasi Effiong
Port Harcourt, Nov. 2, 2020 Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers says his administration will replace all the properties allegedly destroyed by members of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) during the #EndSARS protest in parts of Rivers.
Wike, who made this known on Monday in a statement by his Media Aide, Mr Kelvin Ebiri, expressed regrets that the damage done during the protest left a huge financial burden on the state.
Speaking during a live television programme in Port Harcourt, Wike said IPOB members killed six soldiers, four policemen and destroyed all police stations and court buildings there’’, restating that the State government will compensate each family of the killed security personnel with N20 million.
The governor also described the allegation that he ordered the Nigerian Army to kill Igbos in Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers as a politically-motivated falsehood.
He maintained that “curfew was imposed in Oyigbo to restore calm after IPOB members, apart from the killings, destroyed all police stations and court buildings there’’.
He said the narrative that Igbos were being killed was intended to shift attention from the despicable activities of IPOB in Oyigbo, a boundary area adjoining Abia.
“I know that this is not the first time IPOB has used Oyigbo as launching ground. The security agencies are aware. IPOB added a new dimension this time. I proscribed IPOB activities anywhere in the state. Don’t forget that the Federal Government had declared them a terrorist group.
“It is not the entire Igbos that believe in IPOB activities. So, it’s not true that I ordered the military to kill Igbos in Oyigbo. What about the Igbos living elsewhere in the state are they also being killed?’’ the statement added.
The Governor bemoaned IPOB’s effrontery to rename a local government in the State and hoist its flag in a public school in Komkom Town.
“I will not fold my arms and watch criminals destroy my state; if those few criminals are Igbos then they should know that I will not allow them. I know who is doing all these; who has told them to rise, protest against Wike,’’ the governor said.
According to him, even the South-East Governors have never supported IPOB and wondered why a Governor from the Niger Delta should tolerate the group.
He revealed that security agencies, during their search of some houses in Oyigbo, saw shrines with IPOB flags and Nnamdi Kanu’s picture.
He maintained that “if IPOB is allowed to operate from Oyigbo, they will soon overrun the State’’.