Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State has charged security agencies in the state to defend themselves against armed aggressors who attack them and destroy their facilities.
Mr Umahi gave the charge on Friday in Abakaliki while receiving the Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) in charge of South-east zone, Joseph Egbunike, in his office.
The governor, who reiterated his support for the ‘Operation Restore Peace’, a police initiative in the zone, charged security agents to engage anyone who attacked them.
“It is wrong for you to be holding a gun and someone will attack, kill and snatch your gun.
“You do not need anyone’s permission to defend yourselves.
“I state clearly that if a youth has the courage to attack a security agent with a gun, such a security agent should shoot to defend himself if he can.
“I have made this point severally and will never regret doing so,” he said.
He said the security officials killed were humans too “and also peoples’ fathers and mothers”.
The governor however, complained about shortage of police personnel in the state and urged the DIG to post more to the state for adequate security.
“You should not allow your personnel posted to the state to leave because we need them and will do everything possible to accommodate them,” he said.
Mr Egbunike in his remark, thanked the governor for his reception and noted that he was in the state to oversee the activities of police’s Operation Restore Peace.
“Dialogue and diplomacy solve all issues of marginalisation, injustice, inequality, among others and this is exemplified with the prevailing peace in Europe,” he said.
While charging the people to cooperate with the police to solve the prevailing security challenges in the zone and country, Mr Egbunike said “the challenging days in the country would soon be over”.
Security officials have been the targets of deadly attacks in Nigeria’s South-east and South-south regions for several weeks now.
Facilities belonging to the Independent National Electoral Commission in the two geopolitical zones have also been set ablaze in similar attacks.
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