Insecurity: Inside Bayelsa, South-South’s ‘safest state’

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Ifeanyi was discussing with a female neighbour at Ovom, about two kilometers from Government House, Yenagoa, when some suspected cultists accosted him and despite his plea that he was not a rival cultist, shot him in the stomach; as he ran with blood dripping from the wound, he fell and he was shot again.

The female neighbour looked on in horror at the gory spectacle and was only jolted to reality when the assailants asked her if she would not get away from the scene; she eventually did, but by that time, Ifeanyi lay dead in a pool of his own blood.

In the case of a young man in his late 20s, LoveGod, he was shot along Obele Street during a robbery operation by an armed gang; his case mirrors those of many others, some who were shot and killed simply for the fact that they had no valuables on them.

At the popular Ekeki newsstand, a man recounted the ordeal of a lady who was dispossessed of her handbag and other valuables including cell phone in broad daylight close to Swali Ultra Modern Market.

According to him, some concerned bystanders noticed a police stop-and-search point a short distance away and though they remonstrated with the officers to arrest the situation, they were ignored while “collecting N100 from Keke drivers.”

Perhaps, it would not be out of line to recount my own experience here since I also live and work in Yenagoa and share in the security challenges that have become a recurring issue on a daily basis across all the axes of the state capital.

On Sunday, June 16, 2019, three men left a night vigil somewhere behind the famous Bishop Dimieari Grammar School (BDGS) at about 6.30am and went through a winding