- By Esther Nworie
Despite the Ebonyi State Government directive for military to take over the disputed land between Abaomege and Isinkwo community, Onicha Local Government Area of the State, over the weekend, report says one person identified as Nwata Ibe Ezigbo was on Tuesday killed while about 10 persons from Abaomege Community sustained injuries following repeated attacks allegedly carried out by neighbouring Isinkwo Community.
The two communities have been having a land dispute at their borders which reignited last week.
Umahi in a public statement had urged the military to take over the land in dispute since the two warring communities can’t embrace peace.
It was gathered that the warring communities rejected the peace committee set up by the state government and vowed to fight till infinity.
Consequently on Tuesday, one person was allegedly murdered while three persons allegedly abducted from the community are still nowhere to be found.
The state Governor, David Umahi on Sunday ordered security agencies in the state to enter the two communities and bring a stop to the clashes.
He also ordered the State Ministry of Lands to acquire the disputed land for Government use.
The source in the Abaomege community who doesn’t want his name on print alleged that despite the measures put by government and security chiefs, the people of Isinkwo have not relented in attacking the people of Abaomege.
He appealed for double effort from all sources to stop the renewed age-long crisis.
His words, “Yesterday evening, Isinkwo attacked Abaomege again, they shot one person dead on the spot while 5 persons were left with various degrees of bullet wounds”
He further disclosed that the recent attack came 24 hours after the Traditional Ruler of Isinkwo apologized to Abaomege people over the attacks by his people.
The monarch issued the apology at a peace meeting organized by the Deputy Speaker of Ebonyi House of Assembly, Obasi Odefa Obasi.
Mr. Odefa is the lawmaker representing the area in the State Assembly.
“On Monday the Traditional Ruler of Isinkwo, Isinkwo Autonomous community apologized on behalf of his people and pleaded for peace. But 24 hours after that an Abaomege man who went to spray pesticide on his farm was kidnapped and nothing has been heard of him since then.”
“As if that was not enough, at about 5:30pm in the evening of Tuesday, Isinkwo attacked some Abaomege residents in the comfort of their homes and shot one person dead on the spot while about 5 persons were left with various degrees of bullet injuries.”
It was alleged that Isinkwo people at the peace meeting claimed that it has two casualties from the clashes but when security men who came with the Deputy Speaker interrogated one of the women who claimed her only son was murdered; she changed her story and said nothing happened to her son.
“Only one woman out of about 4 missing persons was brought back by the police. We are suspecting the rest might have been killed since nothing has been heard about them”, the source said.
The source said at least 10 persons have been injured in Abaomege since the attacks began.
However, this medium could not visit the buffer zone to interact with the accused community as a result of insecurity in the area.
Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state when contacted said she was not aware of the development.
DSP Loveth Odah said, “I am not aware of the incident.”
“Let me call the Divisional Police Officer of the area to find out. I will get back to you”, she said.
She was yet to do so at press time. She subsequently did not pick calls placed to her phone lines hours after the first call.
But Commissioner for Border Peace and Internal Security, Stanley Okoro Emegha when contacted confirmed the incident.
“Yes I am aware of the incident and we are on top of the situation”, he said.
Emegha said government has sent a reinforcement of soldiers, policemen and other security agencies to support the ones deployed to the area initially.