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Uzodinma: Imo Gov explains reason for military operations in Orlu

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Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has explained the rationale behind the recent Nigerian military operation against Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in some parts of Orlu.

Uzodinma further pledged to resist calls regarding the withdrawal of the troops from the state.

The governor made this clarification via a statement issued by the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Cyprian Akaolisa, at a press briefing in Owerri, on Friday, February 19.

According to Uzodinma, the narrative that innocent people were being killed by the military was false.

The statement also explained that the governor invited soldiers in Orlu to restore calm in the area after members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) killed policemen and citizens.

He said the government discovered that there were deliberate attempts by IPOB to attack Orlu people and the government in the guise that they were looking for Fulani herdsmen.

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Uzodinma said, “They are now using those arms to destroy Orlu. They killed 10 policemen, a prominent Orlu son, Ignatius Obiezu, and one Emmanuel Okeke (Soludo) collected their Hilux vehicles

“The IPOB also shot and killed four Moslems doing their business in Orlu. IPOB said they were looking for herdsmen, but these victims they killed before the crisis, were they herdsmen?

“We heard Nnamdi Kanu celebrating the activities of his men in Orlu; that they are doing well by killing innocent citizens. There are no Fulani herdsmen in Orlu. What is the colouration IPOB is trying to give this onslaught?

“That’s why our government decided to invite the military to flush out IPOB and their so-called ESN. We discovered that there was a camp which IPOB established at Umutanze, Orlu and we sent police to dislodge them.”

The governor said IPOB attacked the policemen and killed two of them.

He recalled that after the military succeeded in dislodging them, the members went on a reprisal and murdered people.

Uzodinma said they relocated to Udah in Orsu LGA, a camp at a boundary between Imo and Anambra States.

He disclosed that the place was under surveillance for two weeks and it was discovered more than 200 fighters were being trained.

The Imo government said the military had to deploy their arsenal to diminish IPOB members there.

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