We the undersigned organizations in Rivers State are greatly alarmed by the recent spate of gruesome murderous activities of a suspected criminal(s) in Rivers State which has left over 10 Women and girls dead in Hotels.
This activity has become more worrisome because there has been no strong indication that the killer(s) is being tracked by security forces and no sign of a solution in sight, rather more reports are emerging of death in similar circumstances.
It goes without saying that the women whose lives have been so unceremoniously cut short in their prime come from families like we all do. Some of them are mothers, sisters, wives, friends and colleagues just like you and I. These women had a right to life as enshrined in Chapter 4 Section 33 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and No one had a right to take their life and go Scot free!
With the continuation of these attacks, the women in Rivers State now live in fear of engaging in social activities and even business concerns as they do not know who the next victim will be. The assumption that the victims were prostitutes with no proof whatsoever, is very sad and condemnable as it is an insult on the memory of the dead who may legitimately be using the hotel facilities at the time. We believe that the families of these women deserve an apology for such disrespect to their loved ones.
Today, we stand here as one, to vehemently express our displeasure and unequivocally condemn this dastardly killing of women in its entirety and declare that ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
❌ We refuse to stand by and watch our sisters being slaughtered like animals.
❌ We refuse to fold our hands and keep quiet.
❌ We refuse to be cowed by the faceless and cowardly criminal(s) that hides his face in the dark.
❌ We refuse to accept this unmerited attack on our womanhood.
❌ We have therefore chosen to stand up and say *NO* to these acts of violence and demand *JUSTICE* for the slain women and return of a peaceful and conducive social environment to our State.
We, in the light of these violations of the rights of our women and girls have therefore embarked on this Peace Walk to STATE AND DEMAND as follows:
A thorough, unbiased and speedy investigation by the Police into all reported cases of killing of women in hotels and Motels in Rivers State and the arrest and prosecution of the culprit(s) and accomplices within 14 DAYS of this Publication.
A Public apology by the Police as regards the statement they made that was reported in the media branding the victims of these killings prostitutes without any proof whatsoever.
The mandatory installation of CCTV cameras and other necessary security gadgets around hotel premises in the State.
The proper identification of all Guests and details of every visitor received by their Guests while in the hotel.
Institution of new universal hotel policies that would include capturing of guests and visitor’s data, recording gadgets and equipment, amongst others.
Police emergency numbers to be posted on all hotel rooms and emergency lines at reception desk.
In order to ensure these issues are effectively attended to, WE THEREFORE CALL
On THE POLICE to intensify their efforts and to set up dedicated phone lines and an Emergency response Unit for female victims of homicide and Sexual Violence
On Hotel proprietors to cooperate with the Police in their efforts to fish out the killers of our women and girls and to report all shady or suspicious characters promptly to the Police, while training their staff on security measures.
On members of the Public, especially the women in Rivers State to be alert and avoid any questionable clandestine meetings and report any suspicious persons to the Law enforcement Agencies. We must be our sisters’ keepers!
In conclusion while we are aware that the State Government has commenced action on this issue, we urge that it should be accorded utmost priority at this time. No effort should be spared to bring an end to this menace which is very disheartening and therefore requires very serious and urgent interventions by all and sundry. We must not forget that the woman is the heart of the nation and when you hurt a woman, you hurt the entire family, State and the Nation. The time for Action is now. SAVE OUR SOULS!
Dated this Wednesday the 18th day of September 2019