The people of Eliozu and Rumuosunwor-Eneka communities in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State have sought intervention of the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, over harassment and intimidation by policemen.
The traumatised people decided to petition the IGP, with a copy obtained by our reporter yesterday in Port Harcourt.
While further speaking on behalf of the communities, the Palace Secretary of Eliozu, Comrade Clinton Adams, stated that the two neighbouring communities had boundary problems in time past, but the leaders raised a joint peace committee to delineate the boundary.
He noted that some unnamed powerful persons in the area, for their parochial interests, would not let people of the communities have peace and they continually thwarted the efforts of the leaders.
Adams said: “The influential persons introduced some hoodlums into the crisis. The criminals, at a point, had to camp in the troubled area. The efforts of the Rivers State Police Command and personnel of the IGP Monitoring Unit recently paid off and the area was raided, with many of the criminals arrested and paraded with sophisticated arms and ammunition that were recovered from them.
“To the surprise of the indigenes and residents of the communities, the arrested hoodlums were released by the police to continue terrorising the people.
“To make matters worse, the criminals boasted of having powerful sponsors. Policemen later came for mass arrest of innocent persons, including the informants, but the released criminals were re-arrested by men of the IGP’s Intelligence Response Team from Abuja and they made useful statements.
“Most of the people of the communities now live in fear, while some have deserted their homes, as the hoodlums gave 14 days for reprisal. That is why we decided to petition the IGP to save our souls.”
The palace secretary of Eliozu also urged the IGP to ensure thorough investigation of the incident by professional policemen, while asking that persons found culpable should be made to face the law, to serve as a deterrent to others.
Rivers police Spokesman, Nnamdi Omoni, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), could not be reached, as at press time.