The Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, has ordered officers, posted to Southeast as members of a new special operational action plan code-named “OPERATION RP” to be ruthless with members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its armed wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN).
The special operation, according to the police boss, in a statement today, May 18 by the Force’s spokesman, Frank Mba, is meant to engender all-inclusive security actions to roll-back the murderous attacks, violence, proliferation of weapons and other threats to law and order occasioned by the separatist agenda being heightened by the IPOB and ESN in the region.
“The ‘Operation’ will be carried out by operatives of the Force in collaboration with the Armed Forces, the intelligence community and other sister security agencies. The personnel deployed have been charged to be civil with the law-abiding citizens, but firm and ruthless with criminal elements operating under any guise whatsoever who may attempt to test the collective will of the people.”
The IGP observed that activities of the group in the region have assumed an armed dimension in which important political and community leaders as well as personnel and assets of the Nigeria Police, Military and other security agencies, critical national infrastructure are being constantly targeted in clearly well-coordinated, premeditated manners. This is in addition to deepening inter-ethnic prejudice and intolerance, unjustifiable inter-ethnic violence and counter-violence, loss of lives and massive destruction of properties.
Usman Bala expressed appreciation to individual and collective efforts of all the South-East Governors and other critical stakeholders in the region towards supporting the Police in restoring security and strengthening national unity, and assured the nation, that in the coming days the special operation will be extended to other parts of the South-East region to confront criminal elements, take the battle to their doorsteps and re-order our cherished national values in the region.
The IGP said that the “Operation RP” will be replicated in other parts of the country, to address peculiar crimes including banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery, cultism, amongst others.
This was even as the Governor of Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, commended the IGP for initiating the special operation, describing the operation as timely, and will help in rejigging and re-tooling the security architecture of the South-East.