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Governor Willie Obiano has said his government has no issues with pro-Biafra protesters but that he will make sure the state is crime-free.
This came in a reaction to allegation made by the Indigenous People of Biafra that the governor will be held responsible for any killing by security operatives in the region following the launch of Operation Python Dance by the military which was endorsed by the governor.
IPOB had said: “We are going to hold the South East governors responsible if anything happens to anybody in the zone because the Federal Government and the Nigerian Army cannot afford to deploy its weapons in all parts of the South East without the consent of state governors.
“The governors of Anambra, Imo and Abia are now together with their counterparts in Enugu and Ebonyi states to kill their kiths and kins.”
Ogbuefi Tony Nnacheta who is the Anambra state commissioner of information said the allegation was mischievous as the military exercise was not for violent attacks but to keep the state safe.
“The on-going Exercise Python Dance by the Nigerian Army in the South-East has been misinterpreted by some persons as an exercise designed to inconvenience the Igbo and in particular Ndi-Anambra.
“It is mischievously propagated in some quarters as a terrible Christmas gift to our people. Governor Obiano’s statement on the exercise has been distorted by malicious persons in the social media.
“The government and people of Anambra State are appalled at these nefarious efforts and condemn it emphatically.
“It is incorrect for some persons to suggest that Anambra State is at war or loggerheads with any sect, persons or organisations on account of the ongoing military training exercise.”
“Anambra State is today the safest state in not just Nigeria but West Africa. This is a long leap since the assumption of office of Governor Obiano 33 months ago.
“Before this era, kidnappers and other extremely violent criminals were almost overrunning the state, forcing businesses and families to relocate from our state and move to places like Lagos and Abuja.
“Our people also began to perform odd things like conducting traditional marriage rites in such places. It is sadly true that some traditional rulers in our state kidnapped during the dark days are yet to be found. We cannot, therefore, forget in a hurry our recent past.
“The task of restoring peace and order in our state and ensuring that Anambra State does become what some people may call a failed state marked by lawlessness was a cardinal and early task of the Willie Obiano administration.
“The state government worked closely with security agencies to achieve the sustained success in the Anambra.
“Cooperation has been the key to the security of lives and property in our state. Members of these organisations discharged their duties professionally.”
“Exercise Python Dance is a routine military exercise by the Nigerian Army in the South East of Nigeria, not only Anambra State. Similar exercises have taken place in other geographical zones of the country without incidents or controversy; Niger Delta and North West being the most recent weeks ago.”
The commissioner insisted that the state is not at war with any sect or group.
“Rather, the officers and men of the Nigerian Army are enjoined to discharge their duties with courtesy, thereby earning the respect of our people in the entire South East. We are informed that an elaborate Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Line of Operation has been planned during the exercise, such as medical outreach, repairs of roads, schools and other infrastructure across the South East Region.
“The Anambra State Government will at all times ensure that the rights and comfort of our people which are non-negotiable are respected by all and sundry. The government and Ndi Anambra shall together continue to assure that our state remains the safest part of Nigeria and West Africa and eager to welcome our kit and kin to a redoubtable holiday season.”