31 December 2012

Nigeria: Convoy Clash - I Am Still in Shock, Traumatised, Says Anyanwu

The echoes of last Thursday's convoy power-show between the security aides of Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State and the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Navy, Senator Chris Anyanwu, along the Owerri-Umuahia highway is still reverberating, as Anyanwu said she is still traumatised and in shock.

But the governor in a statement by his Special Adviser Media, Mr. Ebere Uzoukwu, claimed that it was Anyanwu's convoy, which broke into the convoy with a view to killing him (Okorocha).

Anyanwu in a telephone conversation with THISDAY Sunday , said she was yet to come to terms with the reason behind the dehumanising treatment meted out to her and her aides by Okorocha's aides on that day.

The Senator, who represents the Owerri/Imo South senatorial district noted that what baffled her most was that she visited the governor on the day of the incident, and wondered what may have informed the "brutal act of macabre dance," while he (Okorocha) watched with "mean" approval.

"This is traumatising, and I am still in shock as am talking to you. I don't know what this show of power is all about," she said.

Asked if she had had any personal squabbles with the governor to prompt the incident, she simply said: "Not at all."

"In fact, in the morning of the sad episode, I visited the Government House to say hello to the governor. I was actually going home (from Owerri after the visit), and they were just behind me, way-laid me in the middle of the road. I don't know that this man (Rochas) is so deceptive and criminally-minded," she said.

Anyanwu, who is a member of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), which Okorocha also belongs, said something must be done to "stop such abusive acts."

"I don't understand where this is coming from because if you see the picture of my driver...they almost broke his skull. I am numbs, if nothing is done to tell this people...if they can do this to me, what would have happened to other people. I think I am numbs because whatever you might say about Okorocha, it is not about harassment," she noted.

Continuing, she said: "It is like what happened in Enugu (convoy brutality) but he denied it. He is so deceptive that you can never predict what this man can do. Here is a very serious situation that we need to seriously look into.

"This man saw me on the road, way laid me and his security men pointed their gun at me and he could not stop them and say; 'hey this is my Senator'. Even if I am not a Senator, I am a human being with rights of movement and dignity."

Meanwhile, Uzoukwu said Anyanwu's claim that Okorocha sat in his car and watched his security aides drag out her drivers and security aides from her convoy of three cars to beat them was false and a "blatant lie".

"It was a planned action to get at the governor and if possible eliminate him in the process... the entire story that the Senator had fed to the media, were all lies concocted to save her face after her plans were aborted.

"The governor is yet to fully recover from the shock of the experience and investigations are on to unravel other culprits who were also involved in the obvious plot to eliminate the governor, who since assumption of office has remained a symbol of peace and mutual coexistence among all political and religious groups in the state," he said.

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