Onah Onah Onitsha
A fact-finding Report otherwise called Truth, Justice and Peace Commission set up by the Anambra State government to look into the crises of agitation, restiveness, violence, and struggles in South-East Nigeria has submitted its interim Report.
Chikwuma Soludo, governor of the State on Friday at the Exco Chamber, Government House, Awka, the State Capital, received the Report, recommended the establishment of an Anambra Integrated Civic Surveillance System and Anambra State Safety and Environmental Commission.
Professor Odinkalu, member of the Committee who presented the interim recommendations, called for the Professionalization and effective coordination of vigilante services in the State, institutionalizing deliverables for the Ministry of Security and Homeland Affairs.
Odinkalu on behalf of the group also recommended a whole-Of-Government Strategy that locates atrocity violence within a Public Health framework, a Bureau of Missing Persons within the Ministry of Justice or of Security and Homeland Affairs to document the missing and the disappeared.
Professor Odinkalu indicated that with the Governor’s approval, the commission will undertake public hearings after the election cycle. He however, asked for extension of time duration to conclude their report.
Speaking after receiving the interim Report, Governor Soludo promised to give the report urgent attention and serious consideration before their final Report is submitted to him.
He thanked the Chairman and members of the Commission for the good job done so far and also approved their request to extend time for the conclusion and submission of their final report to December 2023.
Soludo thereafter requested the Attorney-General, Professor Sylvia Ifemeje, who is a member of the Commission, to table the report for consideration at the next meeting of the Executive Council.
He expressed happiness that the Commission was able to distinguish the agitation from the criminality which has sadly become lucrative in the region.
The Governor explained that he is doing everything within his powers to turn the region to a prosperous and liveable homeland on a sustainable basis.
Earlier, the Secretary of the Commission, Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu read out a summary of the Commission’s work and thereafter presented same to the Governor on behalf of the Commission.
The Secretary to the State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu, recalled that at inception of the present administration, restiveness in the state and the South East was the order of the day.
He explained that in order to pursue his development agenda, the Governor set up the Commission to establish the remote and immediate causes of restiveness in the state and the region since 1999.
Chukwulobelu said the Commission considered this as critical for informed understanding of the context, scope, actors and typologies of violent conflict prevalent in the state and as a foothold into the region.
He also revealed that the report paints a clear picture that the narrative of the present agitation and violence in the States of the South East is quite complex and not amenable to a single narrative.
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