We weep for Ebubeagu (the glory of a lion), a dream security outfit that was conceived by South East Governors to secure the people of South East, their lives and property from the marauding Fulani herdsmen, but which has now died in their womb.

For long, the South East was under siege, occupied by AK-47 wielding Fulani herdsmen who took over all the forests in the area, and from there, have been harassing innocent farmers, maiming and killing them, kidnapping people, destroying their farm crops, and raping their wives and daughters.

Those whose responsibility it is to protect the people and have been empowered and properly equipped to do so at the expense of the taxpayers, have practically failed, as they always looked the other way, while the people were being harassed, molested and killed. This necessitated that the people would take their destiny in their own hands, and would therefore make arrangements for their own protection.

That was when an expanded meeting of South East leaders was convened, where the five state governments in the area agreed to set up a joint security outfit named Ebubeagu, that would work for the security of the region. We heaved a sigh of relief, and everybody was overjoyed.

Then, all of a sudden, and in course of time, the nurse, or the midwife, that was to help deliver the baby, Retired Major General Abel Obi Umahi, Chairman of South East Security Committee, announced his resignation, complaining that he was not given the necessary tool with which to nurse the pregnant woman, to enable her deliver the baby.

We were astonished, flabbergasted, stunned, and surprised. While would the South East Governors make the promise they could not keep? Why did they make a lot of noise about setting up Ebubeagu which was to protect the people of South East when they did not have the resources to do so, or were unwilling to fund the outfit? This is embarrassing.

Since Retired Major General Umahi’s sudden resignation as Chairman of South East Security Committee, none of the South East Governors had said anything, that is, debuncked his claims of non-funding, nor volunteered any information on the way forward.

All we now hear is that the South East Governors are embracing the federal government’s so-called state policing project, as if the policemen that would man the outfit would come from the moon, or that the Inspector General of Police sitting in Abuja, would close his eyes, or no longer have hands in their operations.

The long and short story of this, is that the South East Governors have abandoned Ebubeagu, and have left it to die in the womb, which is due to lack of unity among them.

We now hear is that some people are shopping for another group to father Ebubeagu, and have approached Ohanaeze Ndigbo, which has turned down the offer. According to a statement credited to the Secretary General of the apex Igbo cultural organization, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, Ohanaeze Ndigbo was not “constitutionally empowered” to take over the management of Ebubeagu.

The Secretary General informed that “Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide has rejected the calls from well-meaning Igbos to take over Ebubeagu South East Security outfit”, saying that there was no consultative meetings and people’s approval or authorization for the outfit before its formation.

He advised that the “South East Governors should be encouraged to sufficiently provide necessary logistics and reinstate the Chairman of South East Governors Security Committee who resigned based on logistics deficiencies in operation.

Mazi Isiguzoro revealed that “unlike the Amotekun where the South West Governors provided adequate facilities and logistics, Ebubeagu was built on emotional ground and sentiment.”

He maintained that “Ohanaeze Ndigbo are not saddled with the constitutional rights of protection of lives and properties in the South East, and we are independently funded through communal support of Ndigbo without any government’s consent, and it will be horrible to compound the responsibility of Ebubeagu on us, and emphatically stated that “the South East Governors are capable of providing logistics and we are in full support of them.”

In effect, as things currently stand, Ebubeagu has died in the womb, and is not likely to see the light of day. Nobody wants to own it. The South East Governors which conceived it, have turned their backs on it, while Ohanaeze Ndigbo have washed their hands off the outfit.

At the same time, they want to kill the Eastern Security Network (ESN), an upshoot of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), which have been smoking out murderous Fulani herdsmen from the South East forests, by labelling them a criminal organization, which must not be torelated.

The implication therefore, is that at the moment, the entire South East zone is porous, without protection, which could be easily overrun by any group wanting to do so. Ebubeagu is still-born, died in the womb, and they have blackmailed the Eastern Security Network and tagged it a criminal gang, which must be destroyed.

They have asked us to embrace the same police which were there when they were killing our people, maiming or butchering them, destroying their property and farm crops, and burning down their houses, but they did not do anything. This is amazing!

We place our trust in the hands of God. He alone is our protector and our shield.

Dr. Dons Eze, KSJI

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