Church leaders in Imo, under the auspices of the Concerned Church Leaders Forum, have decried alleged extrajudicial killings in the state.
The state Chairman of the forum, Dr Cosmas Ilechukwu, said at a news briefing in Owerri on Monday that the development had become a norm in the state.
Ilechukwu, therefore, urged Gov. Hope Uzodimma to urgently address the issue in order to put an end to it.
He regretted that life in Imo had become precarious and urged the governor to convene a meeting for all the aggrieved persons and groups to discuss the way forward.
“As we speak, reports say the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri mortuary is filled with bodies of young people killed during the current crisis.
“It is so sad that amidst this return to barbarism in Imo, a leading member of the All Progressives Congress, Mr Ahmed Gulak, was killed in Imo.
“We want to seize this opportunity to appeal to all and sundry to stop the killings.
“We appeal to the unknown gunmen to sheath their swords,” he said.
Ilechukwu expressed worry that the economy of the state had suffered serious setback, while people now moved around in fear.
He advised members of the Indigenous People of Biafra and the Eastern Security Network to retrace their steps, saying any war in Igboland would be devastating.
“There has been an influx of soldiers and policemen from outside into the state.
“People are forced to disembark their vehicles and walk past the army check points, with their hands raised over their heads.
“We have watched with total dismay, some extremely disturbing developments in the country in general, with specific reference to the brewing state of belligerence in the southeast and Imo in particular,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the Commander of 34 Artillery Brigade, Brig. Gen. Reymond Osaghe, said at a news briefing on Saturday that 100 unarmed civilians had so far been killed during the recent upheaval in the state.
He further disclosed that 38 army personnel and 78 police operatives had also lost their lives in the war against insecurity in Imo.