Anambra Debunks Reports on Bakassi Boys Re-emergence

By Our Correspondent

Contrary to reports which made the round recently that palpable fear has taken over major cities and towns in Anambra state following the re-emergence of the dreaded the Bakassi Boys, the state government has come out to debunk the claims. This is as contained in a release made available to the press by the state Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Don Adinuba.

Earlier reports have it that a group of people alleged to be members of the proscribed group marched through major roads around the state capital last week singing war songs without being challenged by security forces.

The development was said to have caused panic among residents of the state capital most of whom are already traumatized by ongoing state of insecurity in the south east.

According to the reports, the major concern among residents is to the effect that members of the group may be an offshoot of the ESN, the militant wing of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, who are currently engaged in a war of attrition with the country’s security forces.
There were reported fears that their presence may unleash in and around the state capital a deluge of security forces, including the army. More worrisome, according the reports, is the fact that no one knows for sure those behind the group’s resurgence particularly because those parading the streets belong to alleged cult groups. That is in addition to claims that the police seems not to be aware of the group’s activities even though they are not hidden.
Investigations by this medium suggest however, that the reports about the re-emergence of the Bakassi Boys are not entirely true. In his response to our enquiries, the state police spokesperson explained that the police did not take action over the alleged presence of Bakassi Boys or respond subsequent media reports because the state government government had already issued a statement that puts the matter to rest. can confirm that indeed, the state government cleared the air surrounding the issue in a statement released and signed by its commissioner for information and public enlightenment, C. Don Adinuba. In the release titled, “No Bakassi Boys in Anambra State”, Adinuba explained that what was widely reported with an attached video that went virile is an effort by Awka young indigenes to fish out cultists who were taking advantage of the inadequate police presence in and around Awka in the last few weeks to forment trouble.
“What the journalists and some members of the public innocently confused with Bakassi Boys’ return to the state is a noble effort of some Awka indigenes to fish out cultists in the community who have attempted to capitalize on the inadequate number of policemen on patrol in the town in the last few months to fight themselves with dangerous weapons. The fights among cultists resulted in some casualties. Awka youth, appalled by the sad development in their peaceful hometown, decided to fish out the cultists from their residences and hideouts. An unidentified young amateur video photographer recorded one of the operations and can be heard in the video exuberantly screaming “Bakassi! Bakassi Boys are back in Awka!”
The commissioner who assured that the reports about the reinsurgence of Bakassi Boys are “…far from the truth”, urged the people to go about their normal day to day activities as according to him, “Anambra state is peaceful and calm. There is no Bakassi Boys security outfit in Awka or any other part of our beloved state. The existing security agencies are doing their best to protect all of us.”

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