At least 9 persons have been killed in a renewed communal war between two communities, with both of them originating from different states according to reports. The communities are Ofioji in Izzi local government area of Ebonyi state and Ijutun-Idoru of Obubura council area of Cross River State
It was disclosed that the people of Ijutun-Odoru in Cross River allegedly descended on the Ofioji Izzi community and started shooting sporadically, killing about nine persons with a pregnant woman included. As at when this report was released, over 56 houses had been razed.
The leader of the Ofioji community, Chief Nwobegu Mbam, in an address to newsmen from his place of solace, disclosed the incident and how they were being attacked brutally by the Cross River militia whom he described as heartless. He also made a call to the state and the federal government to intervene before residents of the community were wiped out.
He also went on to explain that in the course of the attack, a pregnant woman who was identified as Ukamaka Nwifuru allegedly lost her life as the attackers engaged in destroying houses in the community.
“it was very late on Friday night, we had all gone to bed but suddenly a very terrifying sound was heard in our community and in the ensuing confusion, we ran out only to see many houses on fire and that was when we knew that the people of Cross River have invaded us again. They were shooting our people without mercy; they burnt our houses and Carted away our property”
The crisis which has persisted for 8 years has resulted in the loss of at least 58 lives as well as the destruction of over 1000 houses.
Meanwhile, Governor David Umahi, who spoke to the press through Emmanuel Uzor, his Chief Press Secretary described the actions of the attackers as barbaric and called on law enforcement agencies to conduct investigations on the alleged involvement of a former minority leader in the Cross River State House of Assembly, Alex Irek, who is already facing charges for contributing to the start of the crisis
“The Governor made a passionate appeal to the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai over the spate of killing of the people of Ebonyi state by their Cross River counterparts. He made the supplication which was well coded by the Chief of Army Staff and what we heard again was this provocative carnage and wantom killing of our people by the Cross River people and a former lawmaker could descend so low to say that the crisis came as a result of Governor Umahi’s appeal for help and deployment of more soldiers,” he stated.
WATCH: Commotion in Cross River, Ebonyi as 20 killed in communal clash