The Anambra Vigilante Group (AVG) has cried out over fake vigilantes.
The group raised the alarm, saying that the organisation is being impersonated by some people who are not their members, but carry pump action rifles about.
The AVG has for a long time been a partner to secular security agencies in the fight against insecurity in the state.
They are mostly licensed to carry pump action rifles, as against the automatic rifles, wielded by conventional security agents.
They have been very helpful in arresting criminals in various communities, but are always mandated to hand them over to police, upon arrest.
In a press release by the spokesperson of the group, Nweke Nweke, AVG stated that it has been infiltrated by some people who carry pump action rifles, but are not their members, some of who they said, use them nefariously.
Nweke in a press release made available to DAILY POST said the group will henceforth arrest and prosecute those who impersonate them.
He warned those impersonating the local security outfit in all nooks and crannies of the state to make an urgent u-turn or face dire consequences.
He said: “It has become imperative to warn those who armpit pump action guns under the umbrella of AVG, but are not known to the Homeland Security Ministry or the operational wing of the outfit to refrain from such activities with immediate effect.
“We call for urgent identification-cum-authentication of all vigilante men working across the state.
“It has become imperative, owing to the danger the operations of the none-recognized Pump Action Gun bearer(s) pose in tackling the insecurity in Anambra State.”
The group said the Anambra State House of Assembly enacted the Anambra State Vigilante Group Law under the Chris Ngige-led administration in 2004, and that the vigilante law gave private groups the right to assist the police and its sister security agencies to eradicate crime and criminalities in the state, but that opportunity should not be abused by anybody.
“In as much as we appreciate the efforts of all private groups in assisting to combat crimes in the state, they should also not work on the back page of the law that empowers them to operate.
“It is, however, a security threat to employ any person with questionable character, as such a person will only sneak in, to know our operational method in assisting the police in fighting the men of the underworld and leak our strategy to his gang and that is another reason we need to know the recruitment method of the private groups.”
The group warned that its task force team would go round and arrest any unidentified person carrying arms, but not affiliated to the Ministry of Homeland Security.