By Vincent Ujumadu
Awka- THE Anambra State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hosea Karma said Wednesday that the greatest challenges faced by the state police command were the activities of the Independent People of Biafra, IPOB, the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, and the herdsmen who are having ugly encounters indigenes in many communities.
Addressing members of the Anambra State House of Assembly committee on police affairs and security, who visited him, Karma said the combined activities of the three groups had led to increased murder cases in the state.
According to him, no fewer than 36 persons were gruesomely murdered in the state between January and April this year. Details showed that nine were murdered in January, five in February, 15 in March while seven had already been recorded in April.
He however added that some of the murder cases involved brother killing brother, son killing father, mother or sister, among other family issues.
“These murders are giving us sleepless nights, especially as they started happening after we had arrested the problems of armed robbery, kidnapping and cult- related activities in this state. But we are not going to allow it to continue as our men are equal to the task.”
The police commissioner expressed worry that while the police was battling with IPOB and MASSOB, the issue of herdsmen reared its ugly head, a development, he said, prompted the state governor, Chief Willie Obiano, to set up a special committee headed by the CP, with personnel from the Army, the Department of State Service, DSS, and the civil defence as members.
He regretted that Anambra command had the least manpower among the South East police commands, adding that the command had only about 50 drivers when it is supposed to have at least 500.
He also said that the number of functional vehicles were inadequate and urged the lawmakers to assist the police in whichever way they could.
Speaking specifically on IPOB and MASSOB, Karma, reminded them that where their rights ended was where those of the police began.
He commended the state House of Assembly for passing the law on the demolition of assets acquired through kidnappings in the state and urged them to maintain their tempo as he observed that the law had helped in reducing crime in the state.
Chairman of the committee, Mr. Victor Okoye had earlier told the CP that they were at the police headquarters to work out a synergy between the House of Assembly and the state police command.