Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia has advised stakeholders and residents of the state to support his administration’s efforts to end the rising wave of violent crimes in the area.
Ikpeazu made the call on Friday at the grand finale of the sensitisation campaign against criminal activities held at Mgboko, the headquarters of Obingwa Local Government Area (LGA).
He said: “We have a unique system that is dependent on the support of the people in order for our state to thrive.
“I urge the people to be vigilant and complement government’s efforts in the fight against crime by reporting suspected criminals to security agencies.
“It is the responsibility of everyone to be vigilant concerning the activities happening around them and the state government will not hesitate to prosecute culprits.”
He said the aim of the campaign was to encourage members of the public to engage in legitimate ventures built on honesty and integrity.
Ikpeazu opined that criminals operate mostly under the influence of drug and described drug abuse and drug trafficking as the bane of society.
He encouraged the people of Abia to take advantage of the various government’s empowerment programmes and dissociate themselves from illegitimate businesses.
In a speech, the Commissioner for Police in the state, Mrs Janet Agbede, said the campaign would help to ensure a crime-free Abia.
Agbede commended the state government for assisting security agencies in the state with necessary logistics to tackle crime and criminality.
She urged the people to apply the principle of “know your neighbour” and endeavour to report unusual activities in their neighbourhood to security agencies.
In an address, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Dr Anthony Agbazuere, described the increasing spate of insecurity in the state as worrisome.
Agbazuere described security as everybody’s business, saying it was imperative for the public to complement government’s efforts in the fight against crime.
Earlier, the Chairman of Abia Traditional Rulers Council, Eze Joseph Nwabeke, said: “Crime is not part of our culture.
“As custodians of our culture, traditional rulers have an important role to play in keeping the state crime-free.”
Nwabeke urged traditional rulers to encourage their subjects to eschew all forms of vices and be law abiding in order to provide the enabling environment for community development.
In an interview with newsmen, the Chairman of Obingwa LGA, Chief Ibe Nwoko, described the campaign as appropriate. Nwoko also promised to initiate programmes that would support the state government’s efforts in tackling crime.