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Rivers Gov. re-imposes 24-hour curfew after cult clashes resume

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has re-imposed a 24-hour curfew on Rumuokoro community in Obio/Akpor Local Government after an upsurge of cult activities that resulted in killing within the axis of the state.

Wike also warned that the government would spare no efforts to deal appropriately with anyone who decides to disturb peace and security in the State with cult activities and associated violence as well as killings.

The governor, in a state-wide broadcast, explained that decision to re-impose two weeks curfew after series of violence around Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover was taken after the State Security Council meeting on Sunday in Port Harcourt.

He explained that the Rivers State Government was seriously disturbed by the recent upsurge of cult activities and related violence and killings around the adjoining areas of the Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover axis.

The governor stated that state government had repeatedly warned misguided youths that engaging in cultism because of its abhorrent anti-social effect on society.

“As part of measures to tackle this menace, therefore, Government has imposed a 24-hour total curfew for two weeks on the entire area along and around the Okoro-nodu flyover up to one-kilometer radius from Saint Emmanuel Anglican Church, Rumuokoro, extending to the Rumuodomaya Slaughter and Local Government daily market with effect from Monday 23rd November 2020.

“Consequently, no form of trading, human or vehicular movement is allowed within the afore-mentioned restricted areas until further notice. Only staff and vehicles belonging to Julius Berger Nigeria Limited are exempted from the curfew and associated restrictions on movement so that construction work on the Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover is not stalled,” he added.

The governor directed security agencies are to enforce strict compliance with the curfew and arrest and summarily prosecute any person, trader, or vehicle that may attempt to violate the curfew.

According to Wike, again, we wish to warn that community leaders that allow cultism and related activities to thrive unabated in their communities would be treated as collaborators to the resulting crimes and dealt with accordingly.

“We urge all citizens to be part of the efforts to curb cultism in the State by reporting any suspicious cult activity, including gatherings and initiations in or around their neighbourhoods to the security agencies for immediate action.”

The governor, however, disclosed that the State government would construct the 7th flyover in Port Harcourt to traverse Ikokwu to Azikiwe Street.

He appealed to residents of Port Harcourt and Obio-Akpor Local Government Areas to bear with the State government for traffic challenges that they may encounter in connection with the ongoing construction of the Oro-Abali and other flyovers.

“As you know our promise to construct and five flyovers to ease the perennial traffic challenges and accelerate socio-economic development of the State is well on course. we delivered and commissioned the first of the initial five flyovers, (the Rebisi flyover) to the glory of God and the good of our State, while construction work on the rest has reached advanced levels of completion.

“Indeed, the Okoro-nu-do flyover is next on the line to be delivered and commissioned, latest, in the first quarter of 2021.

Two days ago, the State Executive Council approved the award of the contract for the constructing of the sixth flyover along the Oro-Abali (Kaduna street) intersection of Aba road to Julius Berger Nigeria Limited.”

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