In A’Ibom, Communities Demand Justice over Feud, Accuses State Govt, Police of Complicity
Stakeholders of Amazaba Clan in Eastern Obolo local government area of Akwa Ibom State on Wednesday alleged that almost 10 years after a communal crisis sacked them from their villages, the state government and the Police have frustrated their efforts to resettle back in their communities.
The Amazaba people also alleged that the people of Ikot Akpan Udo on the other hand had since 2012 been resettling in their villages adding that the Police have always frustrated several efforts towards returning to their villages.
In 2008, Amazaba Clan, comprising eight villages, had engaged in a bloody clash with Ikot Akpan Udo village in Ikot Abasi local government of the state resulting in massive destruction of lives and property on both sides.
The state government as part of measures to prevent further loss of lives and property issued an order for the warring parties to vacate their communities pending the resolution of the crisis.
The Amazaba leaders lamented a total lack of political will, sincerity and fairness by the state government in bringing about an amicable settlement to the lingering feud between the two warring communities.
The Chairman Amazaba Community Development Council, Mr.Ekekiel George Tiligbor, said it was very obvious that the state government and the Police were taking sides with Ikot Akpan Udo village against his people.
“We have made series of steps to the government that we are eager to return back to our home but the government of Akwa Ibom state has done nothing as regards our quest.
“But what we keep seeing is that each time we make efforts to go back to our place, there would be allegations that we are going back to fight with our neighbours. But since this incident happened, our neighbours in Ikot Akpan Udo have been enjoying government support.
“The government has been releasing police security to the Ikot Akpan Udo people and they have been staying in their homes since 2012 while we have been crying,making series of efforts to go back but all our efforts proved abortive”.
Tiligbor regretted that, the Amazaba people and by extension the entire OboloNation in state are being treated as second class citizens by major ethnic groups in the state.
His words: “We are crying to the federal government and the international community that we are tired of living in other people’s communities.
“In fact, if you go to where my people are staying you will shed tears because you will begin to ask if we are really from this state”.
When contacted, the police in the state denied any complicity with the IkotAkpan Udo and the state government against the Amazaba people.
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), ASP Cordelia Nwawe
described the allegation as untrue, saying the police have being fair and non-partisan in the almost 10-year old Amazaba and Ikot Akpan Udo communal crisis.
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