Friday 26 June 2015

Under Fire: No Hiding Place for Criminals and Their Ilk in Eleme

Under Fire: No Hiding Place for Criminals and their Ilk in Eleme


Since 2013 it has been blood, sorrow, horror, pain, death, and helplessness in almost all the towns and villages of Eleme. Sleepless night yet nightmarish, and a crimson web of terror. At night, creaking sounds send shivers down the spines of both male and female, old and young, indigene and resident.

The spate of violence and armed banditry has escalated in recent times. Every day gory tales of violent crimes are told by victims who survived as criminals steal, extort, maim, rape, and kill freely.

But, as God Almighty would have it, the last few days have been quite eventful and challenging for the Eleme Police Division in their quest to halt criminal activities in the area.

The Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of Eleme CSP Nathaniel Okpara disclosed while giving details of his Division’s effort in stemming the tide of crime wave in Eleme that the police had recorded some success in law enforcement.

This assertion was evidently and explicitly confirmed when the exploit of a gang of notorious armed robbers came to an end in the night that breaks Wednesday 17th June, 2015 during robbery operation along Princess Road, Egbalor Ebubu Eleme.

In a swift reaction to a tip off, the DPO, CSP Okpara led a team of gallant police officers to the scene. The robbers numbering more than 15 and well-armed came with slug hammers, big axes, iron-cutters, and other materials with which they destroyed the heavy protectors and dismantled the fortified security doors to gain access into the building, after robbing a nearby house.

Unknown to the dear-devil robbers, the police had been alerted and they arrived almost immediately. On their part, the robbers were also vigilant as they greeted the police with several gunshots. In a gun duel that lasted more than an hour, three of the robbers died instantly, while many others sustained various degrees of gunshot injuries.

A prominent Chief in the community who spoke under anonymity revealed that three other corpse were found in the nearby bush the following day, while the fourth person died in Kaliko Forest, Eta Osaro, Egbalor Ebubu as result of bullet wounds.

Among the things recovered from the robbers include both local and foreign made riffles and ammunition, refrigerators (deep freezers and fridges), electronics, and other household apparatus, and several motorcycles, which the police kept wondering how the hoodlums intend to carry their loots after the operations.

The police as true friend of the people did not leave the victims of the robbery operation to their fate. Rather, CSP Nathaniel Okpara evacuated them to the Eleme Divisional Police Headquarters, Ogale to prevent a reprisal attack by the escapees/members of the robbery gang. A wise decision that saved the family, and further exposed how low criminals can condescend in trying to reap where they did not sow.  It shocked those present at the Police Division, Ogale when a 5 year old boy in Nursery School identified his School bag among the heap of things looted by the robbers.

“Mommy! Mommy!! My School bag! My School bag!” The boy shouted, pointing at his School bag among heap of things carted by the criminals. On opening the bag, the police confirmed that it contains the little boy’s books and writing materials. Truly, in keeping with its slogan that “Police is your friend”, CSP Okpara immediately ordered the School bag to be released to the boy to enable him go to School.

In a related development, on Monday 22nd June, 2015, the Eleme Police Division under the leadership of CSP Okpara also recorded another success as they curbed the AP area, opposite Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited (PHRC), Alesa Eleme. In the aftermath of the exchange of firing, two armed robbers were arrested with catchment of arms and ammunition. In the cause of interrogation one of the robbers revealed that at the AP a gun can be procured for as low as N3,000.00 (three thousand Naira) only.

“The guns are supplied to us by someone from Okrika for N3,000.00. But, we are forbidden from coming into direct contact with the supplier or know his name. It is boss talk to boss”, one of the arrested robbers confessed.

According the captured robbers, an uncompleted building along East-West Road, Eleme New Town, Ogale is where their loots are shared.

Earlier hunts for this notorious gang by the Eleme Police Division ended in futility as the bandits are always a step ahead of the police before nemesis finally caught up with them.

Upon a tip off the police arrived at their hideout, determined. But the robbers were not weak-kneed as well. They engaged the police in a fierce shooting, which prompted them to make a spirited attempt to escape. But the police team rose to the occasion as some robbers met their waterloo in the exchange of fire.

In another development, the Eleme Police also proved that they are on top of the situation when CSP Okpara led his men to defeat another gang of armed robbers after a frenzy gun battle at Oken Eta, Ogale on Thursday 25th June, 2015; at the end of which two robbers died while two others escaped with bullet wounds.

The armed robbers who have some of them dressed in Military Camouflage Uniform were well-armed with riffles and enough ammunition.

Narrating his experience, CSP Okpara said, “As we approached the scene, we were told that the robbers had held their victims hostage in their home, under the heavy rains.  But, with courage and determination, we moved in and dislodged them”.

The way and manner the police in Eleme executed these fatal onslaughts against men of the under-world without losing one of their own shows their preparedness and mastery of modern law enforcement techniques.

The police boss while expressing the Division’s appreciation to members of the public whose information facilitated the eventual apprehension of the bandits urged the public to always cooperate with the police by providing the police with relevant real-time information about crime and criminals in their neighbourhoods.

He observed that the police are out to eliminate crimes and criminals from Eleme; and appealed to operators of hospitals, clinics, and other health facilities in Eleme and environs to report anyone with gunshot wounds to the police.

Okpara advised criminals to leave Eleme, stressing that, “There is no hiding place for criminals in Eleme”. He emphasized that the recent police triumph is a pointer to the determination of the Eleme Police Division to rid Eleme of crimes and criminals. He pointed out emphatically that measures were being taken against all black spots with the launch of the “Operation Rid Eleme of criminals” aimed at addressing security challenge in Eleme. In his words, “Police are working round the clock to ensure that Eleme is conducive for business without fear of any threat or molestation”.

The police boss advised those who fled from Ebubu at the heat of the criminal activities in the area to return as the police is at the top of the security situation, emphasizing that law abiding citizens and residents are to go about their legitimate businesses without fear.

Speaking through its Secretary, High Chief M. O. Ollorwi, the Ebubu Council of Traditional Rulers, Chiefs and Elders, had commended the Eleme Police Division under the leadership of CSP Nathaniel Okpara for returning peace and security to Ebubu and urged all those who left the community during the rival cult clashes to return home as normalcy has been restored.   

As the police carry out onslaught against crimes and criminals in Eleme, it is the responsibility of the public to assist the police by giving them useful real-time information. By so doing you are helping to rid our towns and villages of all sorts of crimes and criminals. Besides, having achieved these feats, the police deserve our commendation, support, and encouragement.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Insecurity in Ebubu: Wike, Demolish Trailer Park Now

Insecurity in Ebubu: Wike, Demolish Trailer Park Now

The Ebubu Trailer Park in Ejamah was originally conceived to serve as Motor Park for heavy trucks, especially trailers waiting for their turn to lift fertilizers from the National Fertilizer Company of Nigeria (NAFCON) and transport it to various retail distributors across the country. 

With time, human presence in the area multiplied; and so did trailers and other vehicles, which caused a lot of jam on the roads. The Trailer Park soon gave rise to a shanty town around it, which can be described as a slum and is over populated.

If someone drives through the major roads, he will mistakenly assume the Trailer Park to be a decent and safe place. On the contrary, Trailer Park is worse than Ajegunle in Lagos touted as Nigeria’s foremost slum settlement. The only similarity between Ajegunle and Trailer Park is that both are built on the ground. Otherwise, Ajegunle is Paris; at least, there are well built houses with toilet facilities. There are roads and streets accessible to vehicles and some of the roads are tarred. Besides, Ajegunle is under the authority of the State and subject to the laws of the land.  

Again, in comparing the Port Harcourt Waterfronts that were demolished and dismantled by Ex-Governor of Rivers State, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi due to safety and security concerns, Trailer Park is worse, and therefore not fit to continue to exist.       

The Trailer Park is connected with Okpako settlement n Ejamah through a pipeline, which is presently used as access way and contains a hand-dug earth drain flowing from the Park into Epene Stream through Okpako settlement.

The shanty structures inhabited by so many people who have no sanitary facilities, resulted to indiscriminate defecation all over the place. Some persons, due to the high population density of the area, put up insanitary commercial toilets and channel the waste into the earth drain that flows down through the slum along the pipeline, also making the place inaccessible.

The Trailer Park and the resulted slum are very filthy and dirty with heaps of refuse scattered all over. The residents of this slum also dispose their refuse along the East-West road directly opposite Daewoo Nigeria Limited, a Korea Company, constituting a serious menace to the public, moreso, polluting the Epene Stream which hitherto serves as source of drinking water for the people of Ebubu.

The houses are made mostly of corrugated iron sheets and timbers. A few are normal block houses, but they are invariably so tightly spaced together that even commercial motorcycles (popularly known as Okada) find it difficult to gain access. Vehicle owners in the settlement park their vehicles along East-West road, Onne road or Ebubu road and trek to their homes down in the hovels.

There is an awful stench that hangs in the air and those who spend some time there carry this odour around town, giving off a whiff of decay.  Trailer Park is deafening and disorderly. Even some corporate bodies are not left out in polluting the environment as they have turned the area into a junkyard for dumping of toxic wastes and other dangerous materials.

 Lamenting the environmental degradation of the area, Senior Pastor with the Assemblies of God Church, Okpako, Rev. Eugene Osarobele said, “Last year they dumped something here and fire engulfed the whole area. People were burnt to death, and properties worth millions of Naira were destroyed. This year again, the same business people have come to dump Chemicals, and those mostly affected are women and children”.

A woman was killed last year by inhaling Chlorine fume that leaked into the atmosphere when the container exploded. Many children whose respiratory system were affected by the fume also died later in the hospital – an incident which forced Daewoo Nigeria Limited to shut down for two days.

It took the intervention of experts from NOTORE Chemicals Limited, Onne and INDORAMA Eleme Petrochemicals Company Limited to seal up the hazardous, destructive and killer toxic explosion and prevent further loss of lives.

Apart from sanitation, the most critical and worrisome attributes of the Trailer Park is the total lack of security and the reign of the laws of the jungle put in place by underworld mafia lords who made themselves immune to the laws of the land.

Until recently, the law enforcement agencies were unable to take control of crime in the area. Robberies were committed in broad day light. Women were regularly raped. Hardly does a week pass without people being murdered. There was an unwritten law which forbids victims of crime to report to the police, even with a police post in a Caravan along the East-West road. Those who break the law will pay with their lives or those of their dear ones.

Of a truth, some gang chiefs have erected permanent outposts where sentries are stationed to watch out for the presence of law enforcement agents. There are also landlords and caretakers who rule by the gun. There are gunrunners who feel free and fear no laws. There are drug dealers who fear no NDLEA operatives. There are also hired killers who laze about with sharp knives and tout for jobs. There are freelance assassins waiting for any odd jobs.

Of course, there are legions of sundry criminals who serve as recruits for political thuggery, oil bunkering, foot soldiers, prostitutes, armed group informants, and so on. Trailer Park appears to be on its own, having a government of its own. What harm has these hardened criminals and prostitutes at Trailer Park not caused to lives and property in Eleme as the area continue to offer them safe haven.

Another contributory factor is the demolition of waterfronts in Port Harcourt and its environs and the sacking of the residents which created hundreds of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Rivers State. This development resulted in mass movement of different types of people into Ebubu and contributed immensely to rising cases of crime in the area. The social decays which prompted the sacking of these waterfronts are known to all of us. These evils find their way into Ebubu and the result is increasing cult cases, armed robbery, rape and other sundry crimes.


The inability of the former Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi to provide alternative settlements for these internally displaced persons coupled with the lack of adequate arrangements to mitigate the diverse negative impacts of unplanned mass movement of people into Ebubu is worrisome, and therefore calls for immediate attention by the present Rivers State Government under the able leadership of Chief Barr. Nyesom Ezenwo Wike to addressing the increasing security challenges arising therefrom in Ebubu.


In recent times Ebubu had recorded an increase in violence clashes between warring street gangs. The Trailer Park has become a strategic staging area for cultists and other criminals to kill, kidnap, rob and rape both indigenes and non-indigenes alike at random.


Many of the toughest secret cult groups have their operational centers in the shanty hiding village of Okpako – Trailer Park, because it provides excellent hiding place and escape outlets in an emergency.


The security threat posed by these illegal, lawless and irresponsible settlers at the Trailer Park is real. The Trailer Park is home to many hardened criminals and prostitutes. They have transformed the hitherto peaceful and orderly Ebubu towns and villages into violent and crime infected communities where cultists, armed robbers, rapists and other hoodlums operate freely day and night.


The roles being played by non- indigenes in the ongoing violence in Ebubu have revealed the danger posed by continues existence of Trailer Park.  Let Trailer Park go!


It is on record that during the Town Hall Meeting held with Eleme people at Ambassador Nne Furo Kurubo Modern Secondary School, Ebubu on August 19, 2010 the Ex-Governor of Rivers State, Chibuike Amaechi directed the then Executive Chairman of Eleme Local Government Hon. Oji N. Ngofa to demolish the Trailer Park “to give way for the Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone complex, and to arrest the health hazards and threats to lives and property posed by the illegal, lawless and irresponsible settlers at the Trailer Park”.


This directive, as loud and clear as it came, was not implemented. Today, all communities in Eleme are facing one security threat or another. Ekporo has been sacked; the very survival of Ebubu is severely threatened. There are reported cases of cult related kills in Ogale, Alesa, Aleto, Alode, Agbonchia, Onne, Eteo, etc.


The criminality, hostility, and lawlessness of the illegal settlers at Trailer Park grow by the day. There resistance to the law of the land and disregard for government authority and development is bothersome.


When on Wednesday 2nd April, 2014, the Eleme Local Government decided to take development to the illegal settlers at the Trailer Park by grading an access road hardly did the authority know that the exercise will be stiffly resisted and turned out to be bloody. Government officials led by the Supervisor for Environment, Chief Emmanuel Oluji and the Secretary of Ejamah Council of Chiefs and Elders, High Chief Augustus A. Yanwi were rough handled, attacked and assaulted by these hoodlums who ganged up into a mob. The grader’s windscreens were shattered, and the Operator beaten mercilessly, not minding the presence of the police.


The lack of security is a major problem in Ebubu in particular and Eleme in general. Trailer Park should be sanitized. Everything possible should be done to provide security of lives and properties in the area.  


Towards this end, all law abiding citizens and residents of Ebubu are to support government’s determination to make Ebubu safe and secure, so that people can go about their legitimate businesses without fear.


The Trailer Park area is porous and poses a serious threat to peace and security within Ebubu and Eleme. Therefore, the calls for the destruction and dismantling of all houses around Trailer Park, and for the government to in turn provide an alternative accommodation for the residents are not out of place.


This is a call on the security agencies to beam their security lights on Trailer Park and possibly take over the place.


Instead of this vast portion of land to be left fallow or to continue to provide sanctuary for criminals, it can be used for other meaningful developmental projects such as a Housing Estate or a Standard Market or a Standard Motor Park to serve the Onne Oil and Gas free Zone and the Onne Ports Complex.


My investigation revealed that the owners of the land are willing to donate the land for any of such developmental project. These are all public revenue generating ventures that the governments can exploit for the benefits of the citizens.   

Tuesday 9 June 2015

Wike Government Should Not Tolerate Cultism

Wike Government Should Not Tolerate Cultism


his article originally titled “Cultism in Ebubu: The Way Forward” was first published on the website, on Monday 13 January, 2014. It is modified and reproduced here to move us to ask ourselves what we have done as a people since then to provide solutions to the lingering cult clashes in Ebubu.   


Cultists are group of persons or illegal gang that operates underworld and without public recognition that may be violent in nature against nonmembers especially when a member or group inordinate needs and demands are not met. Cultism is a cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabric of the Nigerian society and has shattered the once serene Ebubu clan.  In recent times we have recorded over thirty painful cult related deaths. While some were shot dead; others were strangled to death, yet others died in cult associated fatal road mishap during the burial of a victim of cultists’ outburst.



Apart from the display of shame, the Ebubu Cult Crisis from August 8 to September 29, 2013 resulted in the dead of over 30 people; a hundred families and two hundred and twenty individuals were displaced; about 10 others were injured; properties worth over 1billion Naira were damaged and the socio-economic life of Ebubu completely paralyzed.


The recent clashes between two rival cult groups have killed more than 10 people and completely shut down Ebubu as the place has been totally evacuated by both indigenes and residents. All shops and businesses in Ebubu have been forced to close as the cultists adopt new strategy of robbing and raping, in addition to terrorizing law abiding citizens. All markets in Ebubu have been under lock and keys for the past two months. The doors of most schools in Ebubu have remained close since the resumption of schools in the state this term.


There have accusations and counter-accusations between the Chiefs and the Police. While the Police are accusing the chiefs of not giving them enough information and help in their fight against cultism, the Chiefs are pointing accusing fingers at the Police for aiding and abetting the crime of cultism in Ebubu. A Chief was recently quoted as saying, “… anytime we call them (the Police), the team of policemen will switch on their siren about two kilometers away informing the people (cultists) they were coming.


“Many of them bought lands from these boys and so any policeman that has served up to five years in Eleme needs transfer in order to bring peace in Eleme because they have been so used to these boys….”


The Ebubu Youth President, Comrade Atonseobari Ojinga, corroborated the allegations of complicity in the war against cultism in Ebubu leveled against the Eleme Police. He observed that “the time lag in responding to distress calls by police from Ogale or Onne provides opportunity for these criminals to operate and escape before the arrival of the police”. He went on to repeat the call on the Rivers State Government to provide a Police Station in Ebubu.


Severally, the Chiefs of Ebubu have been arrested and severally they have been released for lack of complicity in the cult clashes that has sacked the community. What next? Going back to the basis is suggested. We must understand what cultism is all about. The environmental and social factors that give rise to cultism, the foundations and nurturing processes; the motivations and perceived benefits that attract and sustain recruits, and give them the morale to commit atrocities. 



Of the five categories of cults in Nigeria namely: classical confraternities, mafia cults, female cults, godfathers’ cults and terrorists’ cults, two are present and operational in Ebubu. These are godfather’s cults and terrorist’s cults. Godfatherism is fast growing secret cult in Eleme, that s usually prominent before, during and after elections. The godfathers lure these innocent youths with drugs and monetary inducement and further promises to shield them, give them political appointments and huge monetary rewards which usually turn out to be ruse. And for fear of reprisal these guns and ammunitions are never withdrawn but left in the hands of these criminals and bandits with which they perpetuate violence in the community. 




The cultists in Ebubu concern themselves with perpetuating crimes and fear of crimes by constantly terrorizing law abiding citizens, disposing them of their properties, rape and killing. The ancient city became deserted when the cultists introduced robbing and rape into their operating formula.    




The chiefs and elders’ attempt to use “Ogbe” to control arms bearing and other violent crimes failed due to high level of insincerity displaced by the traditional rulers, Chiefs and Elders. The fear by some of these chiefs that their family may be victimized due to their complicity in the cult crisis necessitated the quick removal of the “Ogbe”. And the secret revocation of the “Ogbe”, brought about the collapsed of traditional authority as things felled apart.


However, during the 2013 cult clashes, efforts marshaled by few traditional rulers who were at home with the assistant of the then Executive Chairman of Eleme Local Government Council, Hon. Oji N. Ngofa to use intelligence and law enforcement resources to control these youths yielded positive results and provided the platform for the majority of the Traditional Rulers, Chiefs, Elders, citizens and residents on self-exile to return home.




It is clear that the Ebubu Youth Council Caretaker Committee have failed to address the Ebubu Cult crisis, the major problem it was created to solve. This failure is a clear manifestation of the rot in our system and the danger in politicizing youth leadership.



I predicted thus in 2013, ‘As peace is gradually returning, it will be disservice to the Eleme nation, if we wait until these young boys and girls get further loose, relocate to “Ɔpε” or into the creeks and consolidate to unleash greater havoc on the masses before we act.  The invocation of “Ete Ɔpᴐ” (Traditional Mace) and “Nkpᴐrᴐ” (Traditional Staff) are but temporary measures likely to fail as did “Ogbe”’.



The problems of rising cases of cultism and insecurity in Ebubu in particular and Eleme in general can be traced to so many factors. Some of these factors are:



1.      Intermittent Communal Crises between Eleme and Okrika


These crises encouraged the procurement of guns and knives proof charms for majority of the youths to protect them during these wars. The cessation of hostilities did not terminate the potency or otherwise of the charms. Majority of these youths still believe that they are invisible, that they are guns and matches resistant. The crises also exposed the youths to places where they can procure these charms.


The police and other law enforcement agencies should step up their intelligence mechanism and expand their investigative tentacles to uncover these native doctors/medicine men as part of the processes of containing the menace of cultism in Eleme. The traditional rulers can be helpful in this regard.



2.      Chieftaincy Tussle and Acrimony among the Chiefs


Chieftaincy tussle and acrimony among the chiefs of Ebubu have assumed an alarming state. It is a cold war that many do not know it exist yet its impact is being fetched in the activities of these young boys and girls who are being misled for their sponsors’ selfish goal. Government must address the emerging time bomb in Ebubu and in other clans and communities of Eleme before it explodes and consume us all.



Government must step in to solve the problems of acrimony among the chiefs in Ebubu to avoid total breakdown of law and order. The rising fire can be felt by careful observers, especially security experts who cannot claim ignorance of the danger posed by increasing chieftaincy tussle and acrimony in Ebubu.



3.      Rivalry Among Youths’ Bodies


The way and manner most of the youth’s bodies in Ebubu were elected and inaugurated left much to be desired. In most communities that constitute Ebubu due processes were not followed. Besides, political considerations and personal interests took prominence over transparency, common sense, and community interests. The results are rising cult related killings, crimes and general fear of crimes. The government owes it a duty to check undue rivalry among the youths by ensuring that where due processes were not followed to elect and constitute a youth body, something is done to address the shortcomings so as to carry everybody along and promote the spirit of comradeship and brotherhood among the youths.  


The politicians should reconsider their present stand of seeing youths and youth bodies as standing armies with which to win elections; and therefore must manipulate youth elections’ processes so as to install cronies and empower them in preparations for elections. This mindset has robbed Elemeland of peace and purposeful leadership. Community leadership, at all levels, is the purview of Council of Chiefs and Elders. The earlier we understand this the better it will be for Eleme.  


Also, towards this end, the traditional rulers should wake up from their slumber or sleep and invoke appropriate traditional instruments in exercise of their powers. Traditional stool is not met for those alienated from what makes the people unique in their own way.


This trend, if left unchecked, the politicians will soon usurp the powers of Ogbo Nkpᴐrᴐ in the selection and installation of traditional rulers; they will decide who becomes a Land Priest/Traditional Prime Minister); and they will also choose who leads Egbara Eta and Mba Eta. Developments that will further provoke our ancestors, split our generation, and retard our civilization.


4.       Social Decay


The general collapse of the value system, disregard for human life, lack of respect for elders and constituted authorities, absence of the once cherished spirit of communal love and peaceful coexistence, and total alienation of the youth from customs and tradition of the people of Eleme due to rapid industrialization and shameless display of ill-gotten wealth are major contributory factors to the uncontrollable incidents of cult induced killings and wide spread terrorism in Ebubu that needed urgent remedy through reorientation and reawakening.



5.      Unemployment

An idle mind is the devil’s workshop says a popular adage. The rate of unemployment in Ebubu is alarming. You need to take a walk around the community any afternoon and see for yourself the number of youths idling away doing nothing. Something need to be done and quickly too to address the problem of unemployment in Ebubu.



6.      Illiteracy


The level of illiteracy in Ebubu is very high compare to other clans of Eleme. This may sound embarrassing and unacceptable to some of us, but, we must tell ourselves the truth for once. There is urgent need for the government to device ways of getting our youths back to school. An educated mind cannot be easily convinced into carrying weapons to terminate the life of a fellow human being or destroy properties maliciously. Government should look in this direction as part of long term solutions to insecurity in Ebubu and Eleme generally.




7.      Desperate Politicians


It may seem myopic or even unspeakable, but the fact is that some desperate politicians are behind the cult crises in Ebubu either during the preparation for the launch of their political ambition or to propagate their popularity or to wrestle political mandate from opponents, or to keep stolen mandate. Whatever way, ignorantly, though, they should be told in clear terms that what they are doing tantamount to building terrorists cell and is against the law of this country especially the provisions of the Terrorism Prevention Act of 2011. 




8.      Laxity on the Parts of Law Enforcement


The laxity on the part of law enforcement arises from the failure of intelligence security and the gap existing between the Police, Neighborhood Guards and the citizens.  The State Security Service (SSS) as plain clothes force should as a matter of priority sit up to its responsibility by gathering real time intelligence that will help check these cultists and criminals. They can create a local ruse force to conduct pseudo operations among these youths. There is urgent need for greater presence and interactions in the communities, use of non-law enforcement resources that breaks cultural, language and information barriers and promotes trust and common goal.



Besides, the animosity and struggle for supremacy between the SSS and the Police in Eleme which is visible and which has robbed them the sharing of intelligence and other information over the years, must be resolved now if the security agencies must deliver on their mandates.




9.      Drug Abuse and Addiction


A walk along any street in Ebubu in particular and Eleme in general will reveal immediately the harm hard drugs has done to our young boys and girls. There is virtually no street in Ebubu without at least three to five drinking joints and a hard drugs dispensing closet. Most cult related violence is traceable to effects of hard drugs. Security agencies must brace up to the fight against drug abuse in the area. Identification and rehabilitation of addicts is not out of place as part of immediate solution.


10.       Arms Proliferations


The proliferation of small arms in Eleme is of great concern to security practitioners. While many of these arms can be traced to the Eleme and Okrika/Ogu communal conflicts as pointed out earlier, others are linked to the recent Niger Delta “militants for negotiation for development” operations. Still others were purchased by the criminally minded to terrorized innocent citizens and residents and dispose them of their belongings. There is therefore urgent need for the government to put all necessary machinery into motion to mop-up these arms. Arm for money strategy is recommended here propelled by the spirit of conditional amnesty.




11. Influx of Displaced Waterfronts’ Residents


The demolition of waterfronts in Port Harcourt and its environs and the sacking of the residents created hundreds of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Rivers State. This development resulted in mass movement of different types of people into Ebubu and contributed immensely to rising cases crimes in the area. The social decays which prompted the sacking of these waterfronts are known to all of us. These evils find their way into Ebubu and the result is increasing cult cases, armed robbery, rapping and other crimes.




The inability of the Rivers State Government to provide alternative settlements for these internally displaced persons coupled with the lack of adequate arrangement to mitigate the diverse negative impacts of unplanned mass movement of people into Ebubu is worrisome, and therefore calls for immediate attention to addressing the increasing security challenges arising therefrom. 




It is therefore not out of place to call on the authorities of Eleme Local Government to do something about “Trailer Park” in Ejamah Ebubu which has become the den of criminals in the area. Attention should also be focused on the security red spots in Alesa, Agbonchia, Akpajo, and Onne that are fast emerging as criminals breeding centers in Eleme.  




Cultism is a thorn in the flesh of the people and a clog in the wheel of progress of Ebubu Clan.  To eradicate this monster, the family, school and church must accept their responsibilities of providing good basic home training, moral and spiritual orientation to the children. The government must eradicate those issues that give rise to crimes and social decay, while law enforcement agencies should ensure that any person who falls short of the law faces the rod of the law. This will create and sustain sanity in our society.


It is now the duty of the various stakeholders in Ebubu Clan to avoid a repetition of the ugly experience of the past which led to breakdown of law and order, and work towards ensuring lasting peace in the area. This, they could do by constantly and continuously monitoring the youth bodies in the area and calling them to order whenever they are derailing.

The chiefs on their part are also advised to institute an effective and efficient peer review mechanism to prevent what might be detrimental to the fragile peace in the area.


The Rivers State Government should also consider the request of the traditional rulers, chiefs, elders and opinion leaders of Ebubu Clan concerning establishing a Police Post in the area. Considering the rapid industrialization that is taking place in the area and uncontrollable influx of people from various parts of the world and the country into Ebubu the request for a police station in the area is not out of place but a priority. Police presence is a good deterrent. 


Let it be pointed out here that a place have been donated by the people, it has been inspected and confirmed suitable by the police authority in Eleme. What is delaying the approval and take off of the Police Post in Ebubu?  


While appreciating the efforts of the Council Chairman and Chiefs and Elders of Ebubu to checkmate the menace of cultism, it is pertinent to call on all concerned stakeholders to ensure that the passion and zeal demonstrated in the course of searching for workable solutions to the problems of cultism is not abandoned midway as that will be more disastrous.



It is also important to call on the Federal Government to consider addressing those long term factors that gave rise to cultism in the areas such as illiteracy, unemployment, and frustration in addition to the short term solutions being implemented.


The Wike government should not tolerate cultism in any part of Rivers State. The government should as a matter of priority encourage the communities to implement zero tolerance to cultism and other vices. The government can only do this by ensuring that anybody caught, no matter from which home he comes, gets an appropriate punishment. Community leadership needs the support of government, law enforcement agencies, and parents to ride the villages of cultists and other bandits. That is, to solve social decay, all stakeholders must cooperate with community leaders so that they can maintain the required discipline.


If parents monitor their children well, they will be under their control. Besides, the government should improve on deliverance of the much talk about dividends of democracy by ensuring that security and welfare of the people are given prominence. Rivers Youths deserve quality education and employment, uninterrupted electricity supply, water and roads, quality health facilities, clean environment and other social infrastructures that guarantee acceptable standards of living for all.