The Traditional Ruler of Uzoubi Umuna autonomous community in Orlu LGA, HRH Eze B C Okereke who was allegedly tortured, and embarrassed by security operatives at the peak of the crisis that rocked Orlu town and environ recently, has petitioned the Imo State commissioner of police for redress. He also requested that those who ridiculed, and subjected him to such shame and dishonor be fished out and brought to book.
The traditional ruler, in a letter dated January 28, 2021 which he personally signed and addressed to the commissioner of police, Imo state police command, Owerri said, “ I wish to draw your attention to a very embarrassing humiliation that I recently suffered in the hands of your, men at Carrot junction roundabout, Orlu.”
According to him, “ on Wednesday, 27th January 2020, at about 2:00pm, I was returning from a meeting of Orlu council of traditional rulers, held at the palace of the traditional ruler of Umudioka Ancient kingdom, HRH Eze Thomas Obiefula. I branched to my office at No. 5 L.N Obioha street, also in Uzoubi, Umuna.
On reaching Carrot junction, I met a team of mobile police men who in spite of the inscription on my car number plate which identified me as the traditional ruler of Uzoubi autonomous community, my explanation to that effect and my appearance as an elderly man pointed a gun at me and ordered me to get down from the car and lie down on the ground for more than 8 minutes in public glare before one of them intervened and told me to get up.”
“This is the height of disrespect to me, my community and the traditional institution”
The letter which was copied to the Chairman, Interim Management Committee, Orlu, Chairman, Imo State Community Policing, Commander, Orlu Area Police Command, Divisional Police Officer, Orlu further said, “you may please investigate this report and necessarily call your men to order. I am still bearing the humiliation, with pain and grief.”
It would be recalled that Nigeria Watchdog newspaper edition of January 28, 2020, had alleged that HRH Eze BC Okereke was tortured and humiliated by security agents posted to Orlu.
Some prominent leaders of the community who commented on the alleged torture and humiliation of the traditional ruler, described it ‘as an affront on the people and desecration of our cherished traditional norms and values. No traditional ruler in any of the northern states would for any reason be subjected to such treatment because that will definitely ignite a conflagration that would be difficult to diffuse or control.”
“The humiliation of such a revered monarch has brought to the fore the worrisome attitude, conduct and actions of security operatives against the people during the uprising. If a monarch could be treated that way, what do you think was the plight of other less privileged people in the community.”