By Yolamchi Ukaga, Umuahia
Coalition of South-East Youth Leaders (COSEYL) has condemned in strong terms, the killing of Father Paul Offu, Catholic Parish priest of St. James the Greater Parish, Ugbawka, in Enugu state, by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
They urged the Inspector General of Police, the Chief of Army Staff, the Chief of Defence Staff and other security heads to work in synergy to arrest the notorious and murderous Fulani herdsmen that killed the priest.
The group, in a statement signed by Chief Goodluck Ibem, President General, COSEYL, stated that security collapse in the country is a clear indication that the security agencies in the country are not living up to expectation.
According to them, “They have failed totally in intelligence gathering. A situation where a particular incidence continues to happen in a particular road and place and nothing is done to arrest it, is worrisome.
“Enugu state that used to be a safe haven, a place of peace, hospitality and harmony, has been turn into a theatre of war and sorrow by notorious and murderous Fulani herdsmen overnight”.
They called on the governor of Enugu state, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, to step up to the challenge and deal decisively with the notorious and murderous Fulani herdsmen in Enugu state.
“The seat of the governor is for men and he should act like a man. After all, he is a lion and should act like one.
“South East governors should stop treating the murderous Fulani herdsmen security threats and notorious activities in the zone with kid gloves. They should stop shying away from their primary responsibility, which is to protect life and property of citizens.
“We want the South East governors to note that this is not the time for series of South East Governors meetings; it is a time for action. It is not a time of press releases in the media; it is a time to act like real men. Their main responsibility, as governors, is the protection of lives and properties of citizens and that is what they must do. The time for lamentation and complaining is over. They should face the challenge”.
They urged houses of assemblyof the South-East states to as a matter of urgency, promulgate laws prohibiting open grazing in their various states,
We call on all traditional rulers, vigilante groups, community leaders and local government chairmen in the zone to immediately set up community security outfits, to know who enters their communities and who leaves. Youth groups should rise up and defend their ancestral homes and communities. The issue of security is the responsibility of everybody”.