Cultism, A Theatrical Demolition?


Human relations is the most complex task for any human person whose intentions are geared towards solving problems. Trapped in the complex situation of addressing societal challenges, leaders all over the world, face the option of either applying fragments of Machiavellian theory of ruthless policy implementation or risk being tagged ‘weak’. Of course, the question of whether President Buhari of Nigeria has been able to nib insecurity and Boko Haram terrorists in the bud quickly comes to mind.


Just like he did on March 12, 2018 when he proscribed 33 cult groups in Akwa Ibom State, Governor Udom Emmanuel on Monday, March 16, 2020, issued another Executive Order, “Cultism and Other Violent Behaviours (Prohibition) Order”, where he proscribed a total of sixty-five (65) cult groups. In doing so, however, the governor, in paragraph Four (4) of the new Order, revoked the Proscription Order of 2018, thereby repealing it as an updated document in synch with the new list. In summary, what the governor did was to add a total of fresh 32 groups to the existing 33 to make it 65.


Accordingly, in the first group of cultism were Vikings, Black Axe, KKK, Buccaneers, Mafias, Luttox (Junior Black Axe), Debam, Dewell, Icelanders, Red Skins, Pyrates, Amorc, Akwa Marines; and Utoto Groups (419). Others were the Luttox, Red. Skins, St. Stephens, Dewell, Sept 11 Group, Secret Sons of Satan, King Cobra, J.V (Junior Vikings), Bats, Predators, Black Ladies, Black Cross, Scavengers, Skylolo, Sons of Nights, Blood Brotherhood, Junior Buccaneers, White Angels, and Musket.


The last additions were cults, societies and groups said to be existing within or outside tertiary institutions, secondary or primary schools in the state. They include Daughters of Queen Amina, Lion, Leo Lion, Neo Black Movement of Africa, Temple of Eden, Daughters of Jezebel, Amazon, Black Brazier, Barracudas, Black Beret, The Dragon, Red Devil, Blood Suckers, Scorpion, Black Eye, Eyie and Sons of Nights. Others were: White Angels, Yellow Ribbon, Python, Black Sword, Supreme Dred Lock, Black Heart, Black Dagger, White Brothers, High Mafia, Street Mafia, Family Mafia, Supreme Red Skin, Italian Mafia, Separate Brothers Confraternity and Clansmen.

RELATED: Curbing Cultism and Related Vices in A’Ibom Secondary Schools: The SPI Panacea

The Governor who cited relevant enabling laws, stated, “… 1, (sic) Mr. Udom Emmanuel, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State of Nigeria do hereby make the following….” In all, the Governor ordered that aside the 65 groups listed, “…any cult, society or group by whatsoever name whose activities are found to be consistent with the activities of a cult shall be considered and treated as such under this Order.


“The activities of all cult, society or group mentioned in paragraph 1 and 2 of this Order are hereby prohibited and defaulters shall be prosecuted in accordance with the Cultism, Offensive Weapons and Violent Behavior (Prohibition) Law, 2004, or any other enabling law in that regard”, he concluded, with an addendum that the Order takes effect from March 16, 2020.


There are very many questions that would be begging for answers, if this latest development must be sincerely reviewed. First, everyone must know that cultism has the character of secrecy, which forbids it from being practised in the open. Is it possible for the Akwa Ibom State government under Deacon Udom Emmanuel to send ‘non-cultists’, perhaps in the uniform of law enforcement agents, to pursue these people from their hiding places and secret meetings?


Obviously, many have called the governor to demonstrate fairness by “fishing out all cultists from his long list of protocols, PA’s, commissioners, local government chairmen, councillors and other organs of government. Some even went as far as naming the open anchor point in Uyo metropolis, Eket and Oron, where some of the proscribed groups operate. “Pirates Anchor Point”, they say is “at Uyo Aillage Road”, while the “Amorc Temple”, they say is “at Abak Road before the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital”. They also stated that Amorc Temple exist in Atabong Road in Eket and the other one at the Civic Centre Road, Oron. All these, they said Governor Udom Emmanuel would be taken seriously, if he goes straight to these places to demolish them.


Similarly, Eyayak Ikpatt, Esq believes that cultists are not spirits and could be fished out, if government is brave and sincere to itself. He submitted thus, “We know as a fact that members of these cult groups are not spirits. They live with us. In fact, many of them are in government as appointees or elected officers. How will the governor reconcile this moral burden? Will the governor have the political will to go after his appointees or elected officers who are known cult members? How will he confront the legal battle that some known organizations (like AMORC, Norsemen Klub of Nigeria and Pyrate Confraternity) that are registered and operate in the open? Will the governor be willing to call members of these cult groups who are also in his government to come out and renounce their membership? What happens to those who belong to highly spiritual and esoteric organizations like the Freemasonry, Ogboni, etal? The earlier these questions are honesty resolved, the better for our society.”


In the final analysis, having seen that the same cult groups were outlawed in 2018 but couldn’t be restricted, should we expect the third demolition, especially if this current exercise becomes futile, as usual? Is there sincerity of purpose in this proscription? What action will government take to cleans the land from the rot? From all indications, there seems to be an undeniable consensus that government corridors have been polluted and greatly infected with this surge of cultism. The questions are, will government delist known cultists from all appointive positions? Will government cause constituents to recall all elected cultists? If these two options are not in the affirmative, should we await the harvest of Christ, when the sheep is expected to be separated? If this is the case, why then should we sound trumpets on ‘values’ we can’t restructure?
Again, what measures would this government adopt to scare or even stop cult persons from being fully involved in politics and leadership? From the unit level, ward and local government levels, is government doing anything to stop cult persons from assuming leadership? Or are we just looking at the Hilltop Mansion and trying to use this headline to attempt a condemnation or disqualification of some persons, who appear more popular for the top job in 2023? Should we not expect an invitation of a popular father of faith who will come to the state to raise an altar call for all known and deeply rooted cultists to come out for repentance? If it is certain that government at all levels are concentrated with occultic people, shouldn’t we share the grace, believing that this whole charade is a mere theatrical demolition?


We should be watchful that this latest Order won’t be a mere dramatic performance, technically staged to massage the ego of those who feel they have the sole reserve of the common patrimony!

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