A former leader of the Nigerian Senate, Victor Ndoma-Egba, has reacted to the recent destruction and looting of his private residence in Calabar, Cross River State.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how Mr Ndoma-Egba’s home and that of other senators from Cross River State were attacked by hoodlums as a fallout of the #EndSARS protest.
The hoodlums also vandalised and looted public facilities, including the state-owned newspaper, the Nigerian Chronicle, and a popular entertainment complex, Tinapa Resort, in the state.
“The intruders broke into my house and looted it to the ground leaving only the bare floor,” Mr Ndoma-Egba said in a statement on Wednesday.
“All the toilets, baths, pumps and indeed every imaginable fitting were removed as were items of furniture, clothing, a huge collection of mainly rare, out of print books, documents and historic photographs.
“They also removed all the windows, railings, family pictures and burglary proofs. Even my private chapel was not spared.
“They set the cars ablaze and parts of the building after more than four hours of interrupted operations in my house. It was methodical. Among the intruders were obviously electricians, plumbers, carpenters, motor mechanics, panel beaters and other tradesmen,” he said.
The former senator, who said he was abroad during the incident, said he got information that his residence was going to be attacked and promptly alerted security agencies in the state.
“I kept calling the security agencies by the hour when in spite of their assurances that they will secure my house there was no evidence of any security personnel in my vicinity,” the former senator said.
“I understand, the times were indeed confounding for everybody,” he added.
Mr Ndoma-Egba said the destruction of his house was “clearly premeditated, wanton and unjustifiable”. He, however, said he understood “the anger in the land”.
He said if the looting and burning of his home would better the lives of young people and bring about positive change “to our land” then he and his family would be glad to take it as a sacrifice.
“While not prejudging, and without prejudice to the work of the security agencies, I have forgiven the intruders, and pray fervently for them to find meaning, inner peace, and fulfilment in their lives. I only plead that they return my late father’s judges robes which they certainly would not be needing for anything and is surely incriminating,” he said.
The former senator said Nigerian leaders must act immediately to “break the cycle of hopelessness, anger, hunger and frustration among our young ones”.
“The recent vandalism, looting and insecurity in Calabar are unprecedented. Calabar, said to be an acronym for “Come And Live And Be At Rest”, has been historically famous for her allure, peace, security, restfulness, greenery, cleanliness, hospitality and culinary exertions. People from far and wide have retired here after a life of toil and sweat elsewhere, to find quiet and harmony.
“Our Carnival Calabar and Obudu Mountain Race had become items on the global events calendar attracting multitudes of people from all over the world as did the Obudu Cattle Ranch and creating their own economies.
“With the needless loss of our innocence to blood and fury through violence and insecurity we are unwittingly losing, if we have not already lost, our essential Calabar, all we have gained over generations, and across history, and our place in the world. We are moving from the global stage to the dark recesses of a gangland,” Mr Ndoma-Egba said.