The Civil Rights group—Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has called for independent forensic investigation into the reported grenade explosion in Afikpo right inside a secondary school field.
This is just as the group said that “We do not accept the official explanation given by the Ebonyi State Government and the contradictory explanation by the police on the same incident”.
In a statement on Wednesday, the HURIWA National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, noted that whereas the Ebonyi State government called it an Accidental explosion of a grenade in his (police man’s) body that accidentally exploded, but the Police called it a teargas canister that exploded.
He emphasized that between the Ebonyi State government and the Police Command in Ebonyi State that gave contradictory explanation on the same matter, one of them or both is/are lying, because there is a wide Chasm between a grenade and a teargas Canister.
Onwubiko further explained that, “This is because a teargas isn’t technically a “gas,” Chatter Said. It’s a powder that is heated and mixed with a liquid or solvent and released from Canisters as an aerosol. There are different types of teargas. The two commonly used by law enforcement are 2 – chlorobenzalmalononitrile (CS) and chloroacetophenone (CN).
“Whereas a grenade is a small bomb thrown by hand or launched mechanically (According to Oxford dictionary). A grenade is a military grade weapon, says multiple security experts.
“We invite the World to see the lies in the two claims thus: The Ebonyi State Government had denied that there was a Suicide Bomber explosion in the state”, he said.
He further noted that the Ebonyi State Government and Southern Nigeria flayed the reports that a particular suicide bomber had detonated explosives attached to his body in the state.
A statement by the Special Assistant to the Governor, Media and Publicity, Francis Nweze, said the news is the handiwork of mischief makers.
He said, “My attention has been drawn to a news making the round in some section of the media that there was an explosion of a suicide bomb in Afikpo, Ebonyi State this afternoon.
“The above news is in sharp contrast to the reality as the incident was a GRENADE of a security personnel carrying out his duties at the said location that accidentally exploded.
“A similar incident equally occurred in front of the Ebonyi State Old Government House as some mobile police officers were servicing their APC machine. The first incident took the life of a passerby while the second caused injuries on the affected person, who has been taken to the hospital, where he is currently receiving treatment.
“The general public is, therefore, charged to disregard the fake news as it is the handiwork of enemies of the state who are bent on causing panic where none exists.
“Furthermore, Ebonyians and residents of Ebonyi State are reminded that generating and spreading of fake news aimed at causing panic in the state is actionable”, the Ebonyi State government had said.
Onwubiko stated that on the contrary and in direct opposition to the police’s explanation, as aforementioned, the Ebonyi State police Command claimed that, “the Police Command in Ebonyi said there was no incident of suicide bombing in the state as being circulated in the social media.
DSP Loveth Odeh, Command’s Public Relation Officer (PPRO) told journalists on Tuesday in Abakaliki that the pictures were not in connection with a suicide bomber.
“There is no bomb explosion in Ebonyi, but regrettably, this morning, one of our mobile police personnel attached to Afikpo on special duty was wounded by teargas.
“The officer mistakenly hit a teargas hung on his belt, and unfortunately, the device exploded and wounded him and he died.
“The lifeless body, the man in the picture is Inspector Idi Aminu, attached to 32 PMF Abakaliki but on special duty at Afikpo.
“So, there is no bomb blast or explosion in Ebonyi. The general public should disregard the information,” the PPRO said.
Onwubiko, however, said that, “as a thinking being can decipher for himself/herself,. Can we ask this questions; these two things (1) grenade (2) teargas are they the same?
“We want the Ebonyi state governor David Umahi and Commissioner of police to answer us because one of them or even the two of them have lied to us through their aides.
“Now, the bigger question is this— (1) Assuming without conceding that the Policeman was carrying a grenade, as we were told by the Ebonyi State Government, what is a lone, and indeed very low level policeman doing with a military grade weapon in a civilian populated area such as secondary school children? Is Afikpo in a state of war and is the school premises the theatre of war?
“(2) supposing we go by the line of the Ebonyi State police that the policeman was carrying teargas Canister that exploded and killed him, the question is, what was a policeman doing alone in a peaceful school environment with a teargas that exploded and killed him? Was there riot in that school environment that only him went to quell? Ebonyi State government and the Ebonyi State Command are twin evils and haven’t told Nigerians the whole truth and nothing but the truth and Nigerians should take their conclusion with a pinch of salt.
“We in HURIWA see the two accounts as very poor crafting of a badly delivered propaganda.
“So, millions of Nigerians that have rationality do not believe it. So, this is why WE ARE CALLING FOR AN INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATION BY FORENSIC INVESTIGATORS.
“Because on our own, what happened look like someone wants to bomb the school but the God of those school children that would have been bombed to death turned around and killed him instead. NIGERIANS AWAIT THE REAL STORY”, he ended.