In the past couple of months, Imo, the once peaceful state, was torn apart by the activities of criminal elements, who were dubbed “unknown gunmen”.
Their activities, seemed to have started with the attack on the Federal Correctional Facility, situated in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
The attack saw the escape of over one thousand prisoners.
Subsequently, attacks targeted mainly at police stations across the state followed, leading to the death of many law enforcement officers, as well as innocent civilians who were caught in the crossfire.
In all the confusion, Imolites have continued to wonder what the purpose of the attacks was? What was it meant to achieve and did they achieve it?
Senator Hope Uzodinma on live television, had insisted that aggrieved politicians in the state, were behind the attacks. His aides on numerous fora, have backed up that assumption, at a time, even indirectly fingering a former governor in of the state.
The coordinator of Save Imo group, Mr. Ebubeagu Ekenulo in a press release he issued for the group, insisted that politicians who lost out in the APC governorship primaries of 2018, were to be blamed for the attacks, and the murder of Alhaji Ahmed Gulak who was the umpire of that primaries, seemed to lend some credence to what Ekenulo was saying.
The Imo State commissioner for Information, Mr. Declan Emelumba had stated that people desirous to see the stoppage of the probes in the state, were to be blamed for the attacks.
Interestingly, since the attacks started, the government have become too distracted by it, to even focus on the probes that used to be the major news in the state.
Was that the purpose of the attacks? Was their mission achieved?
A former governor of the state, had cried out over alleged attempts, to link him to the attacks. Two of his aides were arrested and held for weeks, before they were eventually released after the former governor cried out on live television, as well as to stakeholders in the country.
Several others like a former deputy governorship candidate, who were allegedly arrested in connection to the insecurity, have yet to be heard from, neither have the authorities revealed their findings to the public.
The attack at the Imo State Police Divisional Headquarters, which led to the killing of five of the gunmen, and the arrest of a sixth, as well as exposing the location of their hideout, may probably be the last attack to be witnessed in the state, as the police urge citizens to go about their normal activities.
But the questions still remain unanswered. Who were the sponsors of the attack? What was their aim? Were they successful? Why are those still held in custody, not yet been charged to court? These and many questions beg for answers, as Imo people, especially those who lost loved ones in the crisis, seek closure.