Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, exchanged words over the legality of the Ebubeagu security network in Ebonyi State.
PDP, at a press conference in Abakaliki, claimed the Ebubeagu security outfit, recently launched, was nothing but a private militia of the state government targeted to witch-hunt and harass members of the opposition.
It claimed the outfit has no backing of the law and should not be allowed by security agencies to operate in the state.
The opposition members operating under the aegis of G-64, an association of former Development Centres Coordinators in the state, further alleged that operatives of the Ebubeagu were behind the recent abduction and torture of their member, Amos Ogbonnaya, and called on security agencies to expedite investigations towards the arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators of the heinous act.
Former coordinator, Ishielu East Development Centre, Chigozie Agu, who addressed newsmen on behalf of his colleagues, said: “We want the whole world to know that the so-called Ebubeagu is operating under no known law in Ebonyi state and has been directed to go after and kill G-64 members.’’
In a swift reaction, APC dismissed PDP claims as the rantings of a drowning and dwindling opposition, stressing that the operations of Ebubeagu in the state is legal.
Caretaker Chairman of the party and Commissioner for Internal Security, Border Peace, and Conflict Resolutions, Stanley Okoroemegah, told Daily Sun that the legal requirements for the formation and operations of the outfit had been met.
Similarly, members of the Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), the state chapter, elders council, traditional rulers council and forum of Ebonyi Town Union Presidents have all thrown their weight behind the formation and operations of Ebubeagu and commended Governor Umahi for taking proactive steps to end insecurity in the state, at a joint press conference on Saturday.