Displaced community alleges fake security, accuses govt of massacre plot

Posted by Nabob Ogbonna, Abakaliki | 30 December 2018 | 1,160 times

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Displaced people of Urugban community in Cross River state have raised alarm over alleged presence of fake policemen and armed military men in their area.

The displaced who are presently taking refugee at the residence of Afikpo South local government council Chairman, Eni Chima of Ebonyi state, also accused the Cross River government of plotting for ethnic massacre of Urugban community.

The crisis, which has killed about 12 persons and properties worth over 500million destroyed started on 28th of November, 2018 between Urugban and Egbor communities.

Bishop Frank Owali who spoke on behalf of Urugban community   explained that the fake security men wore military camouflage and were suspected to were hired mercenaries from Bayelsa state.

Bishop Owali added that every effort to arrest the fake security men proved abortive.

“When I got the information I quickly called the 14 brigade commander of the Nigeria army, Abakaliki who told me that the command did not sent any soldier to Urugban and the next day we were still sleeping when they attacked us and beheaded three of our men.

“So as I’m speaking with you now, l have nothing left. My house was burnt down, my two cars burnt not to talk of the 12 persons that were killed and over 60 houses burnt,” he said.

He further called on the federal government to come to their aid, as any further delay would endanger the indigenes of the community the more.

In an interview with Daily Trust at Ekoli-Edda primary school in Afikpo South local government, which serves as one of the  IDP camps, Emmanuel Okam  Onyede said he lost his 32-room building to the crisis.

Onyede added that the crisis would have been avoided if the Egbor community had consulted the two communities who co-own the land in dispute before committing it on  lease to African Stone Works Ltd.

According to him, ”We have had similar experience, though not as fatal as this, with Okon Ohafia people of Abia

”But as soon as the National Boundary Commission came and demarcated the area, peace was restored. However, in this very case, there appears to be a kind of connivance between the NBC, the other eight communities fighting and the Cross River state government to wipe us out.

A correspondent, who was in Ekoli Edda, observed that over 1,000 people had taken refuge in Ekoli Edda primary school, with more than 7,000 displaced since  the crisis began.

The crisis had led to the death of over 12 people  and over 55 houses in the community burnt.

When contacted via phone the Cross River State Police Command, who confirmed that houses were burnt and two people killed, claimed that she have not held of fake security men in the area.

Daily Trust gathered that among the death recorded were seven in the three IDP camps in Ekoli Edda community, Okon and Amangwu Ohafia communities of Ebonyi and Abia states.

Sourced from a Daily Trust report

Source: News Express

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