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Cult killings: Minister of interior visits Rivers, as FG seek partnership with rivers over violence.

Following the renewed cult related killings in parts of Rivers State, Nigeria's Minister of Interior, Lt General Abdulrahman Danbazzau Friday visited Rivers to seeks ways of collaborating with the state government to end the menace that has turned the to a hot bed of violent killings.

The State was greeted in the New Year by news of the massacre by unknown gunmen of 17 persons returning from cross over night church service to usher in the new year at Omoni in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government area of the state.

Reactions on that was yet to die down when another information filtered into town that another 21 lives were lost same new year day in a cult related crisis along Onyiada waterways.

Speaking to the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike on the reasons for his visit Danbazzau said he was in Rivers State at the instance of President Muhammadu Buhari to assess the security situation of the state.

On behalf of the President, he commiserated with the government and people of Rivers State over the killings at Omoku, saying; 'Rivers State is important to the country, particularly when it comes to the issue of the economy'.

'It is very important that the Federal Government partners with the state to see how any security gaps can be closed for adequate protection of lives and property', the Minister of Interior added.

In his response, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike alleged that there is an orchestrated plot to create the impression that the state is unsafe through the promotion of targeted cult killings saying that the security agencies in the state know the cult kingpins terrorising flashpoints in the state.

He said: 'The Security agencies have the profiles of all cult kingpins in different parts of the state and they know their locations.

'There is no wisdom in the politicization of security. Insecurity can affect anybody. You can never know the next victim of insecurity', the governor warned.

He urged the security agencies and the Federal Government to deploy personnel to cult flashpoints in the state to forestall repeated attacks by cultists.

Wike stated; 'In every system, the security agencies know the flashpoints. Here we requested for the strengthening of security around these flashpoints, especially areas with high prevalence of cultists. I expected that security would be beefed up in these places.

'I ask this question. Is there an orchestrated plan to tag Rivers State as unsafe? Is the situation above the security agencies despite the information we have made available to them?' Governor Wike asked .

He also blamed oil multinationals for the explosion of cultism in some communities, pointing out that the multinationals award surveillance contracts to cultists.

He said equipped with funds from multinationals, cultists procure sophisticated weapons with which they terrorise communities and law-abiding persons.

The governor said that the Rivers State Government has made several requests to the Inspector General of Police for the deployment of special squads to tackle cultism and kidnapping. He said that the Inspector General of Police has failed to deploy the special squads to the state, despite the requests.

He said: 'The peculiar nature of Rivers State requires peculiar intervention. Before now, I have been shouting that we need support to fight crime. I have made this complaint severally'.

The governor berated politicians who want to use the cult-related killings to play politics and make false allegations against the state.
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Publication:Nigerian Tribune (Oyo State, Nigeria)
Geographic Code:6NIGR
Date:Jan 5, 2018
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