By Ikechukwu Odu
An Enugu based human rights group, Jonnymanpush, on Monday, faulted the call for the removal of Enugu State Police Commissioner, Ahmad Abdur-Rahman, over the clash by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra and security operatives in Emene Enugu.
The call for the removal of the Police Commissioner was made in a petition to the Police Service Commission (PSC) by an Onitsha based human rights group, Int’l Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law.
Two operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) and no fewer than 21 members of IPOB reportedly died during the clash in the early hours of Sunday, August 23.
In a letter to the (PSC), President of Jonnymanpush, Comrade Chibuzo Onyeije, described the call for the removal of CP Abdur-Rahman as misplaced, misguided and unwarranted.
In his letter titled, ‘A Vote of Confidence on Enugu State Commissioner of Police,’ Onyeije who is also the Convener, Youths Participation in Nigerian Police, urged the PSC to disregard the petition by the Onitsha, Anambra based group.
“We live and work in Enugu and therefore know better than those writing from Anambra State and environs,” the activist stated.
“Let me remind us that Enugu has been a peaceful state despite IPOB meetings and engagements.
“Police know the terms of engagement, which some of these DSS people do not. The Police in Enugu State has been managing IPOB and other group of agitators in the zone and state without much problems.
“They have been very professional and never killed any IPOB or any youth for that matter. Let us put the blame to where it belongs.
“We in Enugu are not only happy with our amiable CP, we have confidence in him and his officers,” Onyeije informed the PSC.
He recalled that the pandemonium started between IPOB and the DSS and the Police moved in based on a distress call, to rescue DSS operatives from captivity.
He wondered why some people are now attempting to deviate from the original story, which was widely reported in both the print and electronic media.
Onyeije noted that “war knows no boundaries nor who caused it,” adding that in the middle of it (war), it could only be managed, but never be balanced.
“The Commissioner of Police has dealt with so many cases/petitions in the state which went in the favour of the oppressed /vulnerable.
“We have reports that since the deployment and redeployment of Commissioners in the State, Mr Abdur-Rahman has developed unquantifiable security formations, fostered police civil society engagements and deployed his officers to areas of expertise based on intellectual capabilities.”
On the issue of corruption among police officers, Onyeije said from their findings based on interactions with him, he neither takes nor offers bribe, adding that “he is the only CP in Enugu who allows NGOs access to police cells.”
He noted that the CP treats everybody with fairness irrespective of the status in the society.
He cited as an example, a petition written to the Police by Jonnymanpush against some politically acclaimed land grabbers, which saw the light of the day under the Abdur-Rahman.
The petition, he said, made it possible for over 200 pensioners including former staff of National Orthopedic Hospital, Enugu to get back their land taken away by the land grabbers.
He therefore urged the PSC to disregard the petition from the Onitsha based group on the grounds that it lacks merit and framework.