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Soludo fights advertising to improve Onitsha’s reputation in Anambra.

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Soludo fights advertising to improve Onitsha’s reputation in Anambra.

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Mr. Ejike (not his real name) recounted the incident that occurred in Upper Iweka, Onitsha, Anambra State last week. Ejike claimed, “My eyes saw pepper yesterday at Upper Iweka,” in a voice letter to his buddies that went viral and detailed his encounter. At around 8 o’clock at night, I was making the trip from Asaba to Onitsha.

Touts began rifling through passengers’ bags as soon as our bus stopped in Upper Iweka. They were armed with machetes and cutlasses, and they would not wait for you to hand over your bags. What happened to me was very horrible.

What Ejike saw in Onitsha is consistent with what others have reported seeing there. The city has become widely known for touting and actions of armed robbers, who frequently operate in broad daylight.

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However, Governor Chukwuma Soludo is determined to purge the state, and particularly Onitsha, the economic hub, of these undesirables. Soludo announced at the recent Ofala festival of the Onitsha people that his government is planning to eliminate touts in Onitsha. He emphasized the need for Onitsha residents to be able to go about their daily lives unmolested and unintimidated.

Recently, the governor made good on his promise and established the Anambra Special Anti-Touting Squad, often known by its acronym, SASA.

Soludo made the following statement at the launch event in Onitsha: “The launch of this squad is an acceleration on the key promise we made to the people living in the greater Onitsha area, which consists of Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Ogbaru, Oyi, and Idemili to restore Anambra State, known for law and order, back to its full glory as the Light of the nation.

Eight municipal governments were seized upon our taking power. The local government regions were freed and normalcy was restored thanks to the joint efforts of our security services and the vigilante service.

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We have yelled for the kids to come out of their caves and the woods. We’ll do what we can to get people back on their feet so they can contribute to their neighborhoods, cities, states, and countries.

While we’re about it, we’ll also be cracking down on touts in the wider Onitsha area and across Anambra State.

“We are fighting a struggle to bring back the soul of our society ruled by law and order, not a society where everybody does what he or she wishes unilaterally without reference to law and order.

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Customers from all around the country are disturbed by the antics of touts. The Governor of Anambra State has stated that the purpose of this mission is to save Onitsha as a commercial center.

Less than 24 hours after the inauguration, 64 people were arrested by the newly created anti-touting group, SASA, in what appeared to be a reward for the debut.

Upper Iweka, Bridge Head, and Chisco Motor Park in Onitsha were targeted due to the high concentration of suspected touts and other criminals. The SASA Director of Operations, Mr. Solomon Onwuemene, while parading the suspects at Onitsha, said the arrest will continue till the Onitsha metropolis is devoid of criminals.

To quote what he had to say: “Following the inauguration of the Anambra State Special Anti-Touting Squad (SASA) at Onitsha by Governor Chukwuma Soludo, the squad has swung into action and arrested 64 suspected touts and a one-chance suspected robber in different locations of Onitsha. To serve as a deterrence to others, all those apprehended would be convicted in court.

Concerns have also been raised that some employees of state government agencies tasked with maintaining law and order are themselves a source of irritation for locals.

Even if there are touts in Onitsha and other major cities in Anambra State, Mr. Chibuike Uloka, a public policy analyst, noted that the biggest challenge facing Anambra people are what he called “official touts.”

According to him, films have surfaced online showing able-bodied guys in various uniforms physically torturing drivers and shop owners over traffic violations or tax money.

Chibuike Uloka commenting regarding the degree of touting in Anambra said: “Recently, reports from Anambra State have highlighted the rowdy attitude of touts and Agbero acting as revenue agents in the state. They’re openly mistreating locals in ways that are making life difficult for drivers, shopkeepers, motorcyclists, and trike riders.

“Rather than criticizing the development of these touts and Agbero in the state’s commercial hubs and rural communities, Professor Charles Soludo’s purposeful quiet is encouraging these unscrupulous individuals to continue their onslaught against those in need of protection from the state.

Over 53,000 touts have been hired in Anambra State in the past 19 months, a dramatic increase since the inception of the anti-touting squad.

These people have the authority to assault and mistreat citizens but are paid next to nothing. The administration of Professor Charles Soludo pledged to create 100,000 new employment each year for the next four years and turn one million young people into millionaires.

“Many young people are being pushed into becoming touts and street urchins, further disrupting struggling businesses and economic activities, instead of fostering industries and supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and vocational training.”

However, Mr. Solomon Onwuemene, SASA’s Director of Operations, has a different opinion.

SASA, he claimed, will put an end to crimes like touting and petty theft in Anambra.

Over 600 touts, he said, had been apprehended since the organization’s inception.

Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Ogbaru, and Idemili North were the primary hotspots for the arrests of suspected touts.

White cocaine, methamphetamine (also known as mkprmmiri), and other illegal narcotics were confiscated from the accused, he said.

He said that the problem of touts in Anambra State would soon be a thing of the past, and he thanked Governor Soludo, Commissioner for Homeland Affairs Mr. Chikodili Anara, and the people of Anambra for their unwavering support.

Mr. Ejike (not his real name) recounted the incident that occurred in Upper Iweka, Onitsha, Anambra State last week. Ejike claimed, “My eyes saw pepper yesterday at Upper Iweka,” in a voice letter to his buddies that went viral and detailed his encounter. At around 8 o’clock at night, I was making the trip from Asaba to Onitsha.

Touts began rifling through passengers’ bags as soon as our bus stopped in Upper Iweka. They were armed with machetes and cutlasses, and they would not wait for you to hand over your bags. What happened to me was very horrible.

What Ejike saw in Onitsha is consistent with what others have reported seeing there. The city has become widely known for touting and actions of armed robbers, who frequently operate in broad daylight.

However, Governor Chukwuma Soludo is determined to purge the state, and particularly Onitsha, the economic hub, of these undesirables. Soludo announced at the recent Ofala festival of the Onitsha people that his government is planning to eliminate touts in Onitsha. He emphasized the need for Onitsha residents to be able to go about their daily lives unmolested and unintimidated.

Recently, the governor made good on his promise and established the Anambra Special Anti-Touting Squad, often known by its acronym, SASA.

Soludo made the following statement at the launch event in Onitsha: “The launch of this squad is an acceleration on the key promise we made to the people living in the greater Onitsha area, which consists of Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Ogbaru, Oyi, and Idemili to restore Anambra State, known for law and order, back to its full glory as the Light of the nation.

Eight municipal governments were seized upon our taking power. The local government regions were freed and normalcy was restored thanks to the joint efforts of our security services and the vigilante service.

We have yelled for the kids to come out of their caves and the woods. We’ll do what we can to get people back on their feet so they can contribute to their neighborhoods, cities, states, and countries.

While we’re about it, we’ll also be cracking down on touts in the wider Onitsha area and across Anambra State.

“We are fighting a struggle to bring back the soul of our society ruled by law and order, not a society where everybody does what he or she wishes unilaterally without reference to law and order.

Customers from all around the country are disturbed by the antics of touts. The Governor of Anambra State has stated that the purpose of this mission is to save Onitsha as a commercial center.

Less than 24 hours after the inauguration, 64 people were arrested by the newly created anti-touting group, SASA, in what appeared to be a reward for the debut.

Upper Iweka, Bridge Head, and Chisco Motor Park in Onitsha were targeted due to the high concentration of suspected touts and other criminals. The SASA Director of Operations, Mr. Solomon Onwuemene, while parading the suspects at Onitsha, said the arrest will continue till the Onitsha metropolis is devoid of criminals.

To quote what he had to say: “Following the inauguration of the Anambra State Special Anti-Touting Squad (SASA) at Onitsha by Governor Chukwuma Soludo, the squad has swung into action and arrested 64 suspected touts and a one-chance suspected robber in different locations of Onitsha. To serve as a deterrence to others, all those apprehended would be convicted in court.

Concerns have also been raised that some employees of state government agencies tasked with maintaining law and order are themselves a source of irritation for locals.

Even if there are touts in Onitsha and other major cities in Anambra State, Mr. Chibuike Uloka, a public policy analyst, noted that the biggest challenge facing Anambra people are what he called “official touts.”

According to him, films have surfaced online showing able-bodied guys in various uniforms physically torturing drivers and shop owners over traffic violations or tax money.

Chibuike Uloka commenting regarding the degree of touting in Anambra said: “Recently, reports from Anambra State have highlighted the rowdy attitude of touts and Agbero acting as revenue agents in the state. They’re openly mistreating locals in ways that are making life difficult for drivers, shopkeepers, motorcyclists, and trike riders.

“Rather than criticizing the development of these touts and Agbero in the state’s commercial hubs and rural communities, Professor Charles Soludo’s purposeful quiet is encouraging these unscrupulous individuals to continue their onslaught against those in need of protection from the state.

Over 53,000 touts have been hired in Anambra State in the past 19 months, a dramatic increase since the inception of the anti-touting squad.

These people have the authority to assault and mistreat citizens but are paid next to nothing. The administration of Professor Charles Soludo pledged to create 100,000 new employment each year for the next four years and turn one million young people into millionaires.

“Many young people are being pushed into becoming touts and street urchins, further disrupting struggling businesses and economic activities, instead of fostering industries and supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and vocational training.”

However, Mr. Solomon Onwuemene, SASA’s Director of Operations, has a different opinion.

SASA, he claimed, will put an end to crimes like touting and petty theft in Anambra.

Over 600 touts, he said, had been apprehended since the organization’s inception.

Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Ogbaru, and Idemili North were the primary hotspots for the arrests of suspected touts.

White cocaine, methamphetamine (also known as mkprmmiri), and other illegal narcotics were confiscated from the accused, he said.

He said that the problem of touts in Anambra State would soon be a thing of the past, and he thanked Governor Soludo, Commissioner for Homeland Affairs Mr. Chikodili Anara, and the people of Anambra for their unwavering support.

 

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