Army authority in 82 Division, Enugu, Enugu State, says that no soldier molested any Abiriba women in Abia, and also described recent protest of some women believed to be members of the Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) as ‘Comical’.
In a news release by the Army division sent to armada and signed by Sagir Musa, the army division’s spokesman, the allegation that army men molested women in Abiriba is ‘funny’. “Let me make it clear that the drama and the allegations that followed are deliberately staged by IPOB. The allegation, just like others before it, is false and a sheer IPOB propaganda to discredit the Nigerian Army. But they will not succeed,” Musa said.
According to the spokesman, he was able to confirm from the Officer in Charge of patrol of Abiriba and its environs, Major Danjuma Ali and the Divisional Police Officer in charge of Abiriba, Superintendent, Titus Ugwuoke who briefed him.
“There was no truth in IPOB’s accusation. Details of what transpired are/were; That on Thursday 18 May 2017, at about 17:05 hours, soldiers of 14 Brigade Ohafia on routine patrol in Abiriba general area, received a distressed call that alerted them of massive presence of IPOB women wing in Abiriba township stadium.
“Most of them were carrying Biafran flags, banners and other insignia. Majority were dressed in Biafran T – Shirts. Instant intelligence revealed that majority of the women came from Aba, Awka, Onitsha, Owerri and Port Harcourt axis as reflected on the various banners exhibited in the stadium.
“By Friday 19 May 2017, at about 09:30 hours, women in large number surged towards the stadium. At that point, the patrol team moved close to the arena, with intent to monitor them further. On sighting the team, the women ran out, removed part of their dresses and converged in an alternate venue where the Divisional Police Officer, Abiriba and His Majesty Eze Ogbu of Abiriba addressed the gathering.
“After the Eze’s address, they peacefully dispersed to their various destinations. His Royal Majesty Eze Ogbu has since briefed the Local Government Chairman and members of the Local Government Security Council on the matter, and there was nothing to suggest that the women were rough handled or arrested. On the basis of the declared details, it is reasonable to state that, there was no contact between army personnel and the IPOB women in Abiriba,” Musa said.