The former leader of the Movement for Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), Ralph Uwazuruike has been accused of using the military to forcefully dispossess people of their ancestral lands in Umunamu Owerre Okwe in Onuimo LGA of Imo State.
Uwazuruike, who is said to be an indigene of Owerre Okwe in same LGA, was alleged to have recruited a good number of young men as his militia forces, who patrol around the community, intimidating and harassing innocent civilians with various ammunition.
Reports has it that the people of the community led by their village chairman, Ifeanyi Uzowuru embarked on a protest on Monday at the Imo State House of Assembly to register their displeasure over the former MASSOB leader’s unwarranted actions.
The chairman while speaking to journalists, said that the people of the community had suffered untold hardship in the hands of the Biafran leader.
He alleged that Uwazuruike uses his militia forces to intimidate the people, perpetrate evil, usurp power, deny people of their fundamental rights, as well as seize their ancestral lands without any regard to the rule of law.
He continued, “despite his action of forcefully seizing our ancestral lands on the 2nd of July, 2019, a land that measured about 10 square kilometers, he came back again to continue his usual eviction and takeover of our farmlands and homes with the flimsy reason that he is building a private university.
“As law abiding citizens, we resolved not to take laws into our own hands despite all the intimidation and threats we are going through in the hands of Chief Ralph Uwazuruike.
“Our community has known no peace since the existence of MASSOB force by Uwazuruike. The intimidation and harassments on our people, the destruction of our cultural heritage, the illicit usage of hard drugs by his men and raping of our women have become most worrisome and have given the people sleepless nights.”
Meanwhile, they appealed to the state House of Assembly to wade into the issue as a matter of urgency by calling the Biafran leader to order, lest they would be left with no option than to take the laws into their own hands.
The speaker of Imo state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Paul Emeziem is an indigene of Onuimo LGA.
Efforts to reach the MASSOB leader through several phone calls proved futile as his number remained unavailable.