FRONT PAGE EDITORIAL: Mr Governor, comb the Ukwulu ‘Sambisa’ Forest now


By Tony Okafor

Some hours ago, there were two separate kidnapping incidents in Ukwulu in the Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State.

The first incident was reportedly narrated by an anonymous woman who was an alleged victim. According to her story her husband and housemaid were also victims.
She wrote :Attention of
Your Excellency, Prof Charles Soludo
This is my Story.
I am a native of Ukwulu, married to Nawgwu. On the 17th of April, 2024, we came back to celebrate the marriage of my daughter. As we were driving to Ukwulu through Abba Junction, after ELDI, we saw cows crossing the road and stopped. Immediately, the cattle men blocked the road and brought out guns and ordered us into the bush. They tie our hand behind us.They started beating us. Some farmers saw us and look away. They did not help us. In the bush, they rape me and my maid before my husband every time without mercy. The third man tear my husband trousers and continue to rape him in the anus. They took our phone and ordered us to start calling our friends and family. They demand for 100 milliom for each of us or they will kill us. After 3 days of continuing to rape us by this cattle men my maid was sick and vomiting blood. My husband is dying as his anus is teared to pieces. I cannot stand up properly due to continue rape. I am wishing I died in that bush.
My son in law gathered 15million and they direct him to MAIN market Onitsha to buy cash. It is obvious the fulani people are working with the money changers.
They released us on Saturday and my son in law rush us to hospital at Asaba.
Your Excellency please save your people by having that bush surrounded by security people. Please chase out these evil cow men from Anambra. Please stop them from wasting lives. Even as we are leaving, they bring two other boys captive. That bush is their base. Those boys will still be there now.
Please help calk Igwe Ukwulu and Nawgwu to take responsibility. I am now a living dead due to fulani in my town. Even the villagers cannot react again maybe due to fear.
Please please Your Excellency, free your people. This is my last wish. Thank you.

The second incident of the ugly saga was authored by one Linus Chukwuma.

He wrote: Greetings,
Let me start by apologising for being quite late with my appreciation on this platform. It has never been in my nature to be an ingrate, however I have been in and out of the hospital because of the physical torture and assault I received at the kidnapper’s den between Friday afternoon and Sunday evening.

Last week Friday, it happened that I was with my close friend and colleague named Tony Anigbobu in his sienna alongside another of our female colleague driving back home from the office which is less than 2 minutes drive to the Abba/Ukpo junction. Unknown to us three hoodlums (fulanis) had perfect plans to attack us, they jumped out from the bush at Ukwulu (the leader with AK 47, the other two with a stick and matchet)

The group leader flagged us down, and the two boys hurriedly jumped into our vehicle and dragged Tony and I out and straight inside the nearby forest. Meanwhile, I had already thrown away my phone inside the car before the criminal had approached me.

Then began our journey into the kidnapper’s den at the thick Ukwulu forests. We trudged for more than 30 minutes inside the forest before we stopped and were blindfolded with clothes and our hands tied as well. As we were humiliated and beaten like common criminals and were asked not to shout or they would waste us. You can imagine the scenario?

Unfortunately, one of them spotted my army-like coloured underwear and accused me of being a military personal. Each turn I took to exonerate myself for being a soldier resulted in severe manhandling with a promise that they will waste my life even after collecting ransom. I kept begging them that I have never touched a gun in my life not to consider joining the military. All my pleas fell in deaf ears.

Then around 8pm on the same Friday night, they moved us away from the forest to another location where we spent the first night in captivity. But before we slept, they asked Tony and I to call our family and friends to arrange for 60 million naira ransom each or they will use the money for our funerals. At that time I was devastated and in a state of shock that I didn’t remember any person’s phone number to call except my elder brother.

But before I could get across to him, my good friend who has always been supportive and encouraging to my course, Mr. Kingsley Ubani had swiftly searched through my Facebook page and notified my brother. Upon calling my brother I told him the situation on ground and asked him to see how we can raise the money so I can leave the unbearable thick forest where the hoodlums neither offered food nor water.

Because I was not with my phone, I had limited contacts to place calls to, and request for any form of assistance. I remember speaking to Ubani and told him to inform my good friends Emeka Trice Obi and Stanley Ikenna Onwuchekwe to inform the duo of my ordeal.

From that moment, Obi Trice, Ubani and my elder brother were constantly on the phone with me and even informed me about this platform which was created to financially rally in my stead. This is a gesture I’ll cherish till I breathe my last.

These criminals will always tie my face and hands during the day and unite my face at dusk, while my hands were permanently tied during my days at the den.

The emotional and psychological trauma can better be imagined than experienced and I cannot even wish my enemies what we passed through at the hands of these criminals.

All in all, I sincerely want to appreciate members of this platform for their tremendous support and solidarity. The rare gesture will be remembered by me and my family.

We are not unaware of the refutation of the development by the traditional ruler of the community, Igwe Peter Anukwu Uyanwa describing it as “lies from the pit of hell”.

It is our considered opinion that it is not proper and advisable to treat security issues of such magnitude in a haste. Diligent investigation is key in such circumstances.

Moreover, before the two episodes supra, there had been similar – fact incidents in Ukwulu and environs.

Those herdsmen that purport to be selling guinea fowls hunted in bushes in that axis should be investigated.

Above all, Governor Soludo should command joint security operatives in the state to comb the Ukwulu said forest and other adjoining forests thereto now with a view to ridding them of criminal elements.

The flashpoints in Okigwe, Orsu, Orsumoghu, Sambisa, etc began just like the Ukwulu incidents.

While we commend Governor Soludo on his efforts to transform Anambra State, it is pertinent to remind him of the covenant in section 14 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria ( as amended) that the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government.
Life, they say, has no duplicate.

By Ifeizu Joe

Ifeizu is a seasoned journalist and Managing Editor of TheRazor. He has wide knowledge of Anambra State and has reported the state objectively for over a decade.

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