NIGERIAN Inspector-General of Police Usman Baba Alkali has ordered a brutal crackdown on members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Delta State.
Alkali gave the order during his working visit to the state police command in Asaba on Monday.
He said IPOB was an outlawed group and must be treated as such.
“That is why you must prepare to deal with any criminal, especially IPOB group. There are spills over agitation or demonstration from Onitsha to Asaba,” he said.
“Brace up to IPOB challenge because it is a proscribed organisation and treat them as such. Unfortunately, #EndSARS started from Delta State.”
He commended his men for doing their best to arrest crimes in the state but charged them to do more as their best was not enough.
He said the police was creating more police divisions to bring policing nearer to the people.
“If you can work in Delta, you can work in any part of Nigeria. That’s why we are creating more areas, command, divisions to bring police nearer to the people.”
“You are trying your best, but your best is not good enough. Anything that happens in Anambra State will affect Delta State, especially the Asaba.”
He assured the command that bullet-proof vests, teargas canisters, helmets and others would be provided before the Anambra governorship election.
There is a heavy security presence in the South-East following attacks on security personnel, outposts and public buildings by unknown gunmen in the region.
The police have always accused IPOB’s members of those behind the attacks and claimed the group as denied several times.
In its recent report, Amnesty International documented 115 incidents of unlawful killing and 62 cases of arbitrary arrest and torture carried out by security operatives since January 2021 in South-East Nigeria.
Amnesty International alleged security forces committed a catalogue of human rights violations and crimes under international law in response to spiralling violence in the South-East.
The human rights group alleged at least 115 persons were killed by security agencies in the region in four months, while 21 security personnel were killed in three months in Imo state.
He disclosed more than 500 persons were arrested after police and military raids with reported widespread allegations of torture and ill-treatment.
“In carrying out a repressive campaign since January, the security forces had included sweeping mass arrests, excessive and unlawful force, and torture and other ill-treatment in its response to the violence,” the report signed by Amnesty International’s Country Director Osai Ojigho said.
“Nigeria’s government has responded with a heavy hand to killings and violence widely attributed to the Eastern Security Network (ESN), the armed wing of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), a pro-Biafra movement.”