Hope Uzodimma, the Imo state governor, on Sunday, June 26, 2022, gave bandits in the Imo forest 10 days to surrender their weapons and vacate from the forest.
Uzodimma stated this at the Government House chapel in Owerri, after the church service.
The governor said he has decided to rid Imo forest of bandits and to achieve it that all the necessary equipment to carry out the operation had been acquired as well as the personnel.
Uzodimma said, “the government has granted a 10-day window to bandits operating and hibernating in the forests in Imo State to leave the place immediately and surrender themselves and their arms to their traditional rulers for unconditional pardon or face bombardment if they fail to do so. The 10-day amnesty grace by the Governor is with immediate effect and will be visited with severe consequences if not taken seriously by the bandits.
“The government has decided to rid the forests in Imo State of bandits and accordingly, has procured the necessary equipment for the purpose, hence the need for those of them who want to be reintegrated into the society to take advantage of the amnesty and quit now and hand over their arms.
“The State is more determined now than before to clear all bandits and to achieve this, the expected equipment and additional recruitment of more Ebube-Agu personnel working in collaboration with the Security Agencies in the State will be used to clear all the waterways and rid the state of the bandits including crude-oil theft. All the waterways are under surveillance with the delivery of new Naval Equipment to the Naval Base in Oguta.”
He continued: “Imo State will be that sting the annual Army Day Celebration from June 30 to July 6, 2022, and that no fewer than 10,000 military personnel drawn from the Army, Navy, Air Force, the Police, among others would be in attendance.
“They would be led by the Army Chief, the Naval Chief, the Air Force Chief, and the Police Chief, among others, according to the Governor.”