RISE AND FALL OF THE BAKASI BOYS
How it started in 1999, a group of Traders in the popular Bakassi line,at Ariara Main Market inAba,decided to take their destiny into their own hands.
Themselves purpose was to put stop to the constant armed robbery, Kidnapping etc attacks, which grounded the commercial activities in the State.
Initially,they were embraced by the people whom Were tired with the high rate of incompetence by the police,who were supposed to fight it.
However the Individuals later turned against them, During that time the Bakassi boy spread their role into areas of social and political control: even enforce debt payment, they chastise women who stray in marriage, and they menace critics of the governor Mbabinuju Government.
Average citizens of Nigerians only got to hear of the Bakassi Boys as from the late 2000, when it became a most unorthodox and unknown crime fighting outfit in Anambra State, especially when it became an object of great controversy and jousting between Governor Chinwoke Mbadinuju and President Olusegun Obasanjo.
President OBJ had promised to uproot the outfit by all means – and in fact did so as said.
After Bakasi boys become a Frankenstein monster, which started gobbling the people it had set out to protect.
It might also be noted that if the law enforcement agencies had been capable to provide security for the humans of the South East when they so badly needed it, the Bakassi Boys would never have become necessary in the first place.
Permit Us take an impartial Look at the Bakasi boys. What really caused it was that, in the late 1990s,the SAP Economic Policy of Babangida (IBB) regime had revolve out to be a amazing blessing in disguise for Igbo business-men and artisans,who so every you are it offered a smooth opportunity to dig deep into their homebred talents to be innovative.
2 set of businesses – the horsewhip workers (Shoe),and tailors (Clothing) – had profit mostly, as they selectively bettered and perfected their trades and aimed the ex-port market.
Aba converters and loafer makers had always been good, how ever became even excellent when greater opportunities beckoned with the sell overseas/Abroad market that existed for them all over Africa, the Middle Belt And Asia. The leather makers always make good shoes and stamp Made in Italyor Made in Spain on them and deposit them on Lebanese and other representative and women that overwhelmed Aba to evacuate the products.
Origin of the Bakasi boys:
Know Bakasi boys begin from Aba Market,in Abia State.
As at 1990s, The famous Aba Market was Every-time surrounded by Armed robbers, Kidnappers and Killers.The sellers in the market were always being intimidated by hoodlums and attacked by robbers.
what that signifies is that Aba city, like the other Igbo cities – ie Onitsha, Nnewi, Owerri, etc – were flooded with cash.
It was also the period when high mansions were germinating in Igbo villages like huge mushrooms that had received an excess of fertilizer.
Yet then,the penalty was not all beneficial,offense rate became on the increase.
Capital is to culprits the way nectar is to bees.
This surplus of cash in Aba and other Igbo cities welcome crime syndicates who go down on the Cities with wicked vengeance never Witnessed before.
The prevail over crime associate in Aba were the Maffs,who opens abominable crimes on the people,in addition to the kidnappings,Robbery and hateful acts, Eg raping of women in presence of their husbands,Or manipulating kids to make love with their parents as their family watched. When all of these were occurring,the law enforcement agencies, were playing to be helpless.
In most issues,if you go to report, the criminals would return the following day to relate to you how you had gone to report to the police and what you had said, with accuracy.
Less than such a layout, the casualty sink their fate with hurtful equanimity.
Cases got to a top when the hoodlums started to kidnap, and even, murder the foreign traders who normally came to take away the finished leather goods and clothing. There was a particular case file of ‘Hajiya’ (for that was the name she was known with) whose decaying body was seen in a ditch, after she had been capture and killed by the gang. That was the last drop of water that packed the can.
Aba tycoon had a feeling that it was between their livelihood and the criminals in East.
It set of compulsory to make visitors understand that Aba express the best and finest in Igboness, hence Aba is always the bastion of Igbo resistance and the symbol of the Igbo resilience.
Aba in the flesh the best and finest - possibly also the worst.
Most commodity that build up the Igbo reality are cooked in Aba, A-lot of a voluntary uprising of the artisans at the Aria Aria Market, Mobilized other traders in Aba and the Bakassi Boys were Establish.
However, the Bakassi Boys had started operations several months before Orji Uzo Kalu came to power.
The traders’ uprising that gave rise to the constitution of the Bakassi Boys happened under the Military administrator that handed over to the civilians in 1999 to Gov.Uzo Kalu..
HOW THEY STARTED:
The traders, mostly indigenes of Abriba, a tribe noted for its avowed prowess and dexterity in the use of cutlass and machetes among the Igbo nation, went to their shrines to gather enough "spiritual and diabolical powers." Backed by this and financial support from among top traders in Aba, the Bakassi boys went into action and they took the fight to the robbers den and secret hideouts.
The result of the onslaught was an instant success, as Aba was totally cleansed of all sorts of crimes.
They were using very horrendous methods.
Suspects were subjected to ghoulish tests.
One of such is to hold a pair of machetes in the form of a cross in front of the face of the alleged evil-doer.
If his face is reflects in the machetes,he is deemed guilty,and put to savage death.
From what most people know, the Bakassi Boys have mystical powers,drawn principally from Ngwa and Ogoni deities, but in consultation with most deities in Igboland, they were able to clean-up Aba and Anis State of criminals, most of whom escaped to other states of the South East, The Bakassi boys were being invited by other states to calm the state down because the crime rate was too high.
Mistakes of Bakassi boys:
Bakassi Boys soon ran into trouble with the federal authorities.
Firstly, when some criminals who had the thugs whom they used against political Opponents, were dealt with by Bakassi Boys, they started to pull strings to do Ban the Bakasi boys.
In reaction, Governor Mbabinuju quickly moved to legalize the activities of the Bakassi Boys by getting the Anambra state house of assembly to pass a law legalizing them as the Anambra State Vigilante Services (AVS).
However, so determined were the opponents of the Bakassi Boys and the state government use of them that the powerful politicians pursued with their influence-laden campaigns against the AVS. Murder of Barrister Igwe and his wife by Bakasi boys:
Perhaps the most abominable was the death of Barrister Igwe and his wife with an unborn baby, who were murdered in cold blood in Onitsha, by people suspected to be connected to the Bakassi Boys, Governor Mbadinuju did not also help matters either; by the way he allowed the control of Bakassi Boys to slip out of his hands into the clutches of individuals who used it to settle personal, political and social scores.
whose operations had by then become totally bastardized.
Incidentally, Barrister Igwe, an Onitsha-based lawyer had been a loud supporter of the labour and civil organisation elements that were campaigning against what was acknowledged as Governor Mbadinuju’s clueless Government, When, President Obasanjo allowed the strong arm of the State to descend and disband the Bakassi Boys, the action was supported,as the outfit had become dysfunctional and totally useless.
People started seeing the out fit as being worse than the criminals they had come to fight.
The Bakassi Boys were disband