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Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba

A’Ibom communal crisis, group seeks arrest, prosecution of perpetrators

A socio-cultural organisation, Mboho Ikot Abasi has called on the Akwa Ibom Government and Security Agencies to arrest and prosecute those who triggered the communal clash that occurred between Eastern Obolo and Ikot Abasi Local Government Areas of the state.

The President General of Mboho Ikot Abasi, Otuekong Ufot Udoinyang, made the call in a press conference in Uyo on Tuesday.

Udoinyang, who spoke on behalf of the group accused the Eastern Obolo people of the attack and killings on May 9, stressing that it was unwarranted, malicious, and unnecessary.

He said that being law-abiding citizens, Ikot Abasi has refused to engage in any reprisal attack in spite of the provocation by wanton killings, destruction of properties, and displacement of many from their ancestral homes.

The president general called on the government for immediate intervention, suggesting that adequate security personnel be stationed in Ikot Akpan Udo village and its environs in order to stop further invasion.

“We are appalled by the unprovoked invasion, killings, malicious damage to property, vandalism, and displacement of the people of Ikot Akpan Udom village in Ukpum Ete Clan of Ikot Abasi Local Government Area by the people of Eastern Obolo, which led to the killing of several people and many others missing.

“On the night of Tuesday, May 09, 2023, the people of Eastern Obolo invaded Ikot Akpan Udo village in Ukpum Ete Clan of Ikot Abasi LGA; killed several people, vandalised and damaged property.

“This attack was not only unprovoked but entirely unwarranted, malicious, and unnecessary, particularly by the fact that it took place under the pretext of protesting against the mapping of the Local Government areas in Akwa Ibom State.

“Nevertheless, we are constrained to restrain ourselves from taking laws into our hands in deference to state authorities, with the hope that the Akwa Ibom State Government will rise to the occasion and stem further attack by the people of Eastern Obolo.

“Also, return normalcy to the affected area, cause the people displaced to return to their homes and continue with their normal daily activities without any fear of further molestations and attacks.

“As a matter of urgency, station adequate security personnel in Ikot Akpan Udo village and environs in order to stem further invasion.

“Identify, arrest, and prosecute the perpetrators and the agents of the wanton killings and destruction in Ikot Akpan Udo village to deter a reocurrence,” he said.

Our Correspondent recalls that on May 9 the Police Public Relations Officer, Akwa Ibom Command, SP Odiko Macdon confirmed the killing of four persons in the area due to the communal crisis

He also recalls that Amazaba community in Eastern Obolo and Ikot Akpan Udo community in the Ikot Abasi LGAs had been in this communal crisis since 2008.

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