SECESSIONIST group the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) has taken it upon itself to rename two roads and the Imo State Government House after the Eastern Security Network (ESN) commandant Commander Ikonso who was killed over the weekend.
On Saturday, Commander Ikonso was shot dead in Awomama Village in Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State. In a fierce confrontation, a combined team make up of personnel of the Nigeria Police, the Nigerian Army and the Department of State Services (DSS) stormed ESN’s operational headquarters in Awomama village, leading to the death of Ikonso.
After battle, the remains of Commander Ikonso and others killed were recovered alongside six AK47 rifles, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and bulletproof charms. Three policemen and one army officer were injured in the exchange and are currently receiving treatment for their injuries.
In defiance of the authorities who have vowed to clampdown on ESN, Ipob has decided to rename Douglas Road, which leads to the Imo State Government House and Awomamma Junction in Owerri after Mr Ikonso. Ipob spokesman Emma Powerful, said the decision was one of the ways its members and Biafrans globally wished to immortalise the fallen leader and his men.
Mr Powerful added: “We the global family of Ipob and Biafrans worldwide ably led by our great and indomitable leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, wish to announce to the world, our unanimous decision to rename the Imo State Government House, Douglas Road Owerri and Awomamma Junction after the late heroic Commander of the Eastern Security Network Ikonso, murdered in cold blood by security operatives. The affected places will henceforth be called Ikonso Government House, Ikonso Way and Ikonso Junction respectively.
“This is with immediate effect and compliance is required of all ministries and parastatals beginning from today, the 28th day of April 2021. “his decision is one of the ways Ipob members and Biafrans all over the world have agreed to immortalise the name of our brave Ikonso and his men killed by security agents.
“We therefore expect maximum cooperation from relevant government agencies, officials and the Imo State House of Assembly because we don’t know who this Douglas is that a road in Owerri was named after him but we know who Ikonso was. He defended Imo State with his life, for without him, most Imo indigenes would be in internally displaced person camps by now courtesy of terrorists.”
Imo State government is yet to react to the decision by the group but it is certain that Governor Hope Uzodinma will dismiss the move as grand-standing. It was Governor Uzodinma who invited the Nigerian Army to Imo State to confront ESN who he accused of banditry.