Following the high rate of insecurity in Ukanafun Local Government in recent times which has led to high profile killings and kidnapping, politicians from the area are no-longer attending public functions, burial and marriage ceremonies organized in the area.
The Sensor authontively gathered that since the killing of the council secretary, Mr. Ime Atakpa and the kidnap of yet to be released founder of Sure Foundation Polytechnic, Dr. Idongesit Udom, politicians have decided to shun public functions for fear of being seen as targets.
It was gathered that a burial of a senior citizen from the area who is believed to have facilitated the creation of Ukanafun and location of the council headquarters at Ikot Akpa Nkuk, was not attended or represented by any government officials either elected or appointed. The same was said to have also been the case in public functions held at the council headquarters.
Our correspondent who visited the council headquarters to observe the ongoing INEC voters registration and revalidation of voter’s card, observed that politicians who before now would have thronged the area to mobilize for the exercise, have not shown-up.
A youth leader from the area who gave his name as Nsikan Friday told correspondent that youths are yet to come to term with the gruesome murder of Ime Atakpa. He said that the fear of any politician being killed, abducted or accused of masterminding the killing of Atakpa has been attributed to the shunning of public functions.
He said that if urgent step is not taken to restore the confidence of the people, it would go along way to affect the 2019 general election in the state.
Meanwhile, The Sensor learnt that many politicians who were based in Ukanafun have since relocated to other cities like Abak and Uyo the state capital for fear of the unknown. A source told our correspondent that the relocation became necessary to calm down tension over the recent killing, kidnapping and robbery going on in the area.
In a related development, youths of Ukanafun have called on the state police command to re-organize the security network in the area to ensure effective policing. The youths who spoke with our correspondent in the area said that the present police formation in Ukanafun are compromised, thus, the increased cases of violent crimes that seems to have no solution.
One of the youths who gave his name simply as Idara, said that many policemen and other security operatives posted to the Division have over stayed and have known virtually some of criminals in the area but have failed to arrest them or nip the crime in the bud.
According to him, “there is urgent need to transfer all the policemen and other security operatives serving in Ukanafun. Many of them have overstayed in the area and they know the gangsters that are currently perpetuating crime in the area”
He noted that crime rate was relatively low when one Friday Mkpa held sway as DPO as the no nonsense officer usually takes war against criminals to their very den. The youth leader regretted that the criminals are not from the moon, but only engaged in more heartless activities shortly after Mkpa left. He called on the state commissioner of police, Mr. Don Awunah to take urgent steps to halt the siege of Ukanafun by criminals.