A Human rights organization the Civil Rights Council have raised concerns over increase in cases of human rights abuses and on the need to address human rights abuses arising from altercations between member’s various vigilante groups set up within communities and local government areas in Rivers state.
The state Chairman of civil rights council Prince Wiro said their group is worried over the raising cases of human rights abuses, infringement in Emuoha Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni, Ikwerre local Government Areas especially in Emuoha LGA Where the local vigilante set up by the Chairman of the LGA Tom Aliezi. ‘’We think there is lack of supervision by him, Because OSPAC are supervised by the council chairmen’’
He said ‘’While people were still talking about the torture mated to Late Chima, In the last 24 hrs. in Rivers State Vigilante shot two persons who narrowly escaped death while Two Other Innocent men were rescued from being killed by OSPAC.
Prince Wiro called on police authorities in Rural areas to rise up to their core mandate of protections of life and properties by ensuring that Organizations like Ospac work within the ambit of the law and given guidelines on how to operate so as not to rubbish the good work they have started already. ‘’In as much as We commend OSPAC for their good work Civil Rights Council shall not condole Human Rights Abuses by the group.’’
He insisted that human rights abuses must be investigated and called on the Police station where the OSPAC operates to open up and receives complaints from the hurting public on operations of Ospac and urged them to invite Divine Samuel Dimkpa the 2nd torture victim of OSPAC at RUMUIJI in Emuoha and to allow for investigation into the case of the young man who made an entry in IBAA but was told that they cannot invite OSPAC. ‘’While the Police station around where the vigilante shot two persons have arrested some of the vigilante members.’’
Meanwhile one of the victims who escaped from bodily harm allegedly caused by Ospac at Ibaa community narrate his ordeal to our correspondent. Chiwekpe Dimkpa said the incident happened on Sunday 26th Jan 2020 when he saw some vigilante men extorting money from Okada Riders and he insisted they should stop so that they don’t tarnish their image on local vigilante groups but that the arguments heated up and they vigilante men called the Ospac group and labelled him a cultist. He said I was tied up like a cow for two days and was tortured with machetes until they finished their profiling and it was confirmed that I don’t live in the village and not a member of the cult group then they set me free. I went to the police station at Ibaa to make an entry and was turned away, I then went Rumuiji I was told to meet a certain man P&G he recorded my statement and I asked him to give me document to allow hospital to treat me, he told me to just go like that.
When contacted. The Chairman of Emuoha local government Tom Aliezi told our correspondent on the phone that he did not receive such complaints from any member of the community. He urged the public to take their complaints to the police or the council for such issues to be resolved.