– As Hoodlums Invade Cabinet Chief’s Home
– Wife, Children Flee For Safety
The relative peace that greeted the election of a 5-man interim executive committee that is charged with the responsibility of overseeing the affairs of Eziama Autonomous Community, in Ikeduru Local Government Area, pending the election of a substantive exco, was in the wee hours of last Saturday, punctured with the invasion of and attack on a cabinet chief’s home by hoodlums suspected to be agents and foot soldiers of the All Progressive Congress (APC) apex leader in the area.
Just last Saturday, December, 9, the once quiet and peaceful people of Eziama heaved a sigh of relief following the election and inauguration of a five-man interim executive Committee with Chief Ndulaka Ogu as President-General (PG).
Other members include; Mr Rowland Ofoebgu-Secretary, Patrick C. Okemadu-P.R.O, Emmanuel Okemadu-Assistant P.R.O, and Vitalis Opara-the Youth Leader.
The election and inauguration which took place at Eziama Community Town Hall was conducted peacefully under the watchful eyes of members of the “Ex-squad” of the Imo State Police Command.
Stakeholders, including sons and daughters of Eziama from the eight villages of; Amaehi, Ogada, Umuopara, Umuagwu, Amambaa, Umuchima, Owuzor and Umuigwe were well represented hence it was adjudged the most credible and transparent.
Addressing the people of Eziama, the interim PG, Chief N. Ogu thanked his people for finding him and members of the new executive worthy of the new task and promised never to let them down.
He said that the policy trust of his administration would be anchored on accountability, transparency, peace and community development, adding that the era of impunity, intimidation, bad blood and hatred is over.
Chief Ogu enjoined all, including members of the former town union executive whose tenure elapsed since February this year to join hands with him to move Eziama Community forward, adding that, “we are all brethren”.
However, this reporter learnt that the joy of the people was short-lived when less than 12 hours after the inauguration of the new executive, news came that the home of a cabinet Chief in the area had been invaded and attacked by hoodlums allegedly sent by fifth columnists.
The incident which sent shock-waves across the community saw the people panting and converging at the home of the victim for sympathy and solidarity.
When this reporter called at the home of the cabinet Chief, High Chief Dr Edmund Mbaegbu was too shocked to speak. He took a deep sigh and said; “only God saved me and my family from imminent destruction”.
Narrating his ordeal, Dr Mbaegbu likened his experience to the dawn of war fare.
According to him, in the wee hours of Saturday, 9, December, less than 12 hours after the inauguration of the new Eziama Town Union (ETU) executive, hoodlums numbering more than ten armed with dangerous weapons including explosives fuel and other combustibles crashed the gate and made straight to his inner room while he laid on his bed.
In a commando style, said Dr Mbaegbu, they started spreading and pouring fuel everywhere and began to strike matches that refused to ignite fire.
One of them, he said, then called for knife since the fire has refused to burn and in the process his family raised the alarm that attracted the neighbourhood and the hoodlums fled.
Meanwhile, Chief Mbaegbu’s home has become a Mecca as sympathizers have continued to troop in their numbers, one of them a middle-aged man who spoke on condition of anonymity said that one of the fleeing hoodlums had been identified as one of the criminal elements in the area who is in the wanted list of Zone 9 Police Command Umuahia.
When the new PG was contacted, he simply sued for peace and enjoined all to remain calm, adding that God would take control.
He said that the new executive would do everything within the armbit of the law to make sure that the hoodlums face the music.
As at the time of filing this report, Lolo Victoria Mbaegbu, wife of High Chief Edmund Mbaegbu and her children are said to have fled their ancestral home, citing constant intimidation, harassment and abduction as she had once been abducted and later released.
Some indigenes of the area who pleaded anonymity condemned the attack on High Chief Mbaegbu, who they described as a respected and dependable community leader who places premium on equity, justice and fairness.
They frowned at the activities of some influential members of the All Progressive Congress APC, in the area whose desperate quest for power and relevance against the wish of the people has torn the community apart, making it a theatre of the absurd.
Effort to hear from some highly placed politicians in the area proved abortive as they did not respond to phones calls.