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Afikpo Crisis: Ebonyi Govt, Groups Calls IGP, Others To Investigates Recent killings


From Adaeze Onuora , Abakaliki

Ebonyi State Government and Edda clan, in the Afikpo South Local Government Area of the State, has trade words over alleged killings and crisis that recently affected the area

The Edda clan allegedly accused Ebonyi State Government over inconsistency in his handling the killings and crises on the area, while petitioned the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; and the National Human Rights Commission, calling on the authorities to probe the recent killings in the area and bring the perpetrators to face justice. 

It will be recalled that on 26th December 2022, Ekoil Edda was thrown into another crisis, which resulted in the deaths of three men including an Inspector of police, and properties a house, two vehicles and a motorcycle were burnt and this incident happened in broad daylight with the same known actors perpetrating crimes in Edda over the years of this government in charge

Also on the 1st day of January 2023, the same group of known actors killed a woman who was seven months pregnant and set ablaze two buildings in the compound after failing to kill the husband who narrowly escaped

Therefore, Chief Julius Oji (aka Ochiri Edda),  the Conveners of Edda Identity, the apex socio-cultural group in the area,  in an open letter dated January 19th, 2023, signed on behalf of the people and addressed to the IGP, Speaker of the House of Representatives and the National Human Rights Commission, alleged Governor Umahi was playing politics with the lives of the people.

According to the letter, "In 2020, the people of Edda, (Afikpo South) LGA of Ebonyi State witnessed a very tragic crisis that resulted in the death of many sons of Edda. These killings and worrisome situations prompted prominent sons and daughters on the platform of the Edda Identity to set up a panel of inquiry to look into the situation and proffer solutions. 

Oji  said" The committee submitted it's report to the state Government, which promised to act on its recommendations but nothing was done to date

" Today, the Governor of Ebonyi State David Umahi, has again set up a commission of inquiry over the recent killings of 26th December 2022, and 1st January 2023, in Ekoli and Amoso Edda respectfully"

in a reaction, the Ebonyi State Commissioner for Information, Uchenna Orji, described the letter as substance-less and ill-willed, adding that it was targeted at demeaning the efforts of the government at bringing peace in the area.

He said, “We view this publication (letter) as a substance-less distraction by a captious and ill-willed complainer, who is saddened by the truce achieved by the State Government over the rift that led to the unfortunate attack at Ekoli Edda that caused lives and properties.

Orji said that Mr Julius Oji’s reasonings on the matter are tainted by self-seeking aggrandisement and completely made-up biases and sentiments against peace and reconciliation in his own clan.

The Commissioner noted that the 2020 panel and its report were not backed up by law, hence the State Government could not act on it.

He noted that the Police following orders by the State Government have embarked on a manhunt for the perpetrators leading to the arrest of many of them.

He urged Mr Oji to provide the police with information about those he claimed are perpetrators of the crimes or he will be deemed to be concealing crimes committed under his knowledge.

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