The Enugu State Police Command announced on Monday that a joint security operation neutralised three members of the Eastern Security Network (ESN), affiliated with the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB). These individuals were planning to enforce an illegal sit-at-home order in the state.
During the operation, which involved special police forces and the Nigerian army, three guns and several machetes were recovered.
The operation occurred in the early hours of Monday in Ezioha Mgbowo, Awgu Local Government Area. Daniel Ndukwe, the Command’s Spokesman, stated that the joint team acted on credible intelligence. Several other individuals managed to escape, sustaining gunshot wounds in the process.
The state Commissioner of Police, CP Kanayo Uzuegbu, commended the joint team’s efforts. He reassured the public about their safety and security while conducting lawful activities.
The commissioner also emphasised the ongoing commitment to combat violent criminals operating under any guise.
The recent operation in Enugu State highlights the complex security challenges facing Nigeria. While the joint security forces deserve commendation for thwarting a potentially disruptive sit-at-home order, questions remain about governance and civil unrest.
The Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and its Eastern Security Network (ESN) represent a symptom of deeper societal issues, not the root cause.
Addressing these challenges requires a multi-faceted approach beyond military and police action. Dialogue and engagement with various community stakeholders are essential for lasting peace.
The government must also address the underlying grievances that give rise to such groups in the first place. Economic development, social justice, and political inclusion are crucial elements that cannot be ignored.
The state and federal governments must collaborate to create a comprehensive strategy. This strategy should address the symptoms and the root causes of civil unrest.
Failure to do so will only lead to a cycle of violence that benefits no one. The time for a holistic approach is now.
Did You Know?
- IPOB was founded in 2012 and aims for the secession of the southeastern regions of Nigeria.
- The Nigerian government declared IPOB a terrorist organisation in 2017.
- The Eastern Security Network (ESN) is considered the militant arm of IPOB.
- Sit-at-home orders have been used as a form of civil disobedience in various parts of the world.
- Enugu State is one of the 36 states of Nigeria and was created in 1991.