There was uproar on Wednesday in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa state capital following the invasion of popular Tombia area by over 30 suspected cultists armed with guns and dangerous weapons leading to the killing of one person.
The incident, which occured at about 7pm on Wednesday night led to stampede and injury to many market women with passerby dispossessed of valuables.
Some of the victims told journalists that the boys shot sporadically into the air and attack anyone in their part. The only resistance came from some vigilante group along the Brass road who prevented the boys from entering the street.
Contacted on the development, the spokesperson of the Bayelsa Police Command, Asinim Butswat, confirmed the killing of one person but said no official report was made about the injured persons.
Reacting, a business owner in the area and former Security Adviser to the state government, Chief Perekeme Kpodoh, confirmed to journalists that the security situation in the Tombia area and other parts of the state is worrisome and pathetic.
Kpodoh, who expressed disgust at the noticeable laxity in the security architecture of the state, called on the administration of Governor Douye Diri to do the right thing before many resident die from armed attacks.
He expressed concern over the fact that the security situation has deteriorated to the extent that no one can walk the street of the Bayelsa state capital without being harassed or dispossessed of mobile phones and other valuables.
Kpodoh, who pointed out that the police should not be blamed due to lack of support and logistics to counter the rising crime rates in the state, said “to blame police is unfair. Many police divisions lack vehicles and logistic support from the state government.
“You cannot move freely in Yenagoa without getting harassed and robbed. It has not been like this in the past. How can over 30 boys move and rob people without being checked and we say we have a governor. These boys are hungry and need to be checked.
“When the security outfit known as Fanmou Tamgbe was on ground, many criminals and cultists abandoned the state. Instead, these politicians whose children were involved in violent crimes politicised its operations. The previous administration even gave cultists Amnesty but could not fulfil its commitment and the boys are back on the street. “
On the issue of development in Bayelsa less than one year after the assumption of the PDP administration of Governor Douye Diri, Chief Kpodoh blamed the lack of development activities despite huge amount accruing to the state in federal allocation, on the rise in crime rate.
Kpodoh noted that the people of the state are running out of patience with the present administration lack of initiative in the area of security and development plans, “Become you declare your intention to become governor, you have had a blue print on your development agenda. But the present administration is still planning.”
“Look at the Tombia round about, they have dumbed the much talked about fly over and now called it expansion. What about the much publicised 50 internal roads? If you compare Bayelsa to Eboyin or Rivers State, Bayelsa has failed. If the opposition offer balance critism, they say you are unfair. Is it not Bayelsa money? Why won’t Bayelsans talk?
Chief Perekeme Kpodoh also called on the National Assembly to intensify the review of the immunity clause to State Governors in order to allow the electorate to hold them accountable.
“The people should be able to hold the accountable and probe their governors on spending and development funds. Most corrupt and under performed governors should be hold accountable.”