Gov. Wike addressing people of Rivers State on Sunday

Okafor Ofiebor/ Port Harcourt

Governor Nyesom Wike on Sunday imposed a 24 –hour curfew on parts of Port Harcourt, the state capital, over upsurge in activities of cult gangs and related violence.

Speaking during a broadcast to the people of the state, Governor Wike said the decision to impose the curfew on the affected areas was taken after the State Security Council meeting on Sunday in Port Harcourt.

He said the curfew, which will be on for two weeks, will cover the entire area around the Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover in Rumuokoro.

According to him, the state government is seriously disturbed by the recent upsurge of cult activities and related violence and killings around the adjoining areas of the Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area.

He added that the upsurge in criminal activities was despite the fact that the government has repeatedly warned misguided youths that engaging in cultism because of its abhorrent anti-social effect on society.

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“As part of measures to tackle this menace therefore, Government has imposed a 24-hour total curfew for two weeks on the entire area along and around the Okoro-nodu flyover up to one-kilometer radius from Saint Emmanuel Anglican Church, Rumuokoro, extending to the Rumuodomaya Slaughter and Local Government daily market with effect from Monday 23rd November 2020.

“Consequently, no form of trading, human or vehicular movement is allowed within the afore-mentioned restricted areas until further notice.

Only staff and vehicles belonging to Julius Berger Nigeria Limited are exempted from the curfew and associated restrictions on movement so that construction work on the Okoro-Nu-Odu flyover is not stalled.”

The governor directed security agencies are to enforce strict compliance with the curfew and arrest and summarily prosecute any person, trader or vehicle that may attempt to violate the curfew.

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“Again, we wish to warn that community leaders that allow cultism and related activities to thrive unabated in their communities would be treated as collaborators to the resulting crimes and dealt with accordingly.

“We urge all citizens to be part of the efforts to curb cultism in the State by reporting any suspicious cult activity, including gatherings and initiations in or around their neighbourhoods to the security agencies for immediate action.”

Governor disclosed that the State government will construct the 7th flyover in Port Harcourt to traverse Ikokwu to Azikiwe Street.

He appealed to residents of Port Harcourt and Obio-Akpor Local Government Areas to bear with the State government for traffic challenges that they may encounter in connection with the ongoing construction of the Oro-Abali and other flyovers.

“As you know our promise to construct and five flyovers to ease the perennial traffic challenges and accelerate socio-economic development of the State is well on course. We delivered and commissioned the first of the initial five flyovers, (the Rebisi flyover) to the glory of God and the good of our State, while construction work on the rest has reached advanced levels of completion.

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“Indeed, the Okoro-nu-do flyover is next on the line to be delivered and commissioned, latest, in the first quarter of 2021.

Two days ago, the State Executive Council approved the award of the contract for the constructing of the sixth flyover along the Oro-Abali (Kaduna street) intersection of Aba road to Julius Berger Nigeria Limited.”