Ebonyi Can Urges Warring Communities To Sheath Their Sword, Embrace Peace
Christian Association of Nigeria(CAN), Ebonyi state chapter has called on the people of Enyigba community, Abakaliki local government area of the state and their neighbouring Enyibichiri, Echi-alike, Ikwo also in the state to sheath their swords and embrace peace.
The two neighbouring communities have been at war for years over boundary matters with many lives lost.
The state government permanently resolved the crisis last year by demarcating the disputed land.
But there was renewed hostilities last two weeks with some little children including breastfeeding ones allegedly abducted by suspected warlords and some lives also lost.
Since the abduction of the children, there has been tension in Abakaliki capital city following alleged threat of Ikwo people by their Izzi counterparts to vacate the city.
Abakaliki capital city is located in Izzi land and the people of the clan allegedly ordered every Ikwo person in the city to vacate the land.
Following the alleged threat, many Ikwo people have left the city to their Ikwo place.
Governor Dave Umahi has been holding meetings between the two warring clans with a view to returning normalcy to the communities.
The state CAN in a communique signed after its emergency meeting on the matter signed by its Chairman, Rev. Fr. Abraham Nwali , regretted that the land dispute that was long resolved with the Executive Order of Governor Umahi, rose its ugly head.
“The recent development in few days led to the burning of some houses, at the part of Enyigba and the part of Enyibichiri.
“But on a special note and heart breaking, is the abduction of children from Izzi which CAN says is highly condemnable.
“CAN therefore, is joining her words to the press release of His Excellency, where he gave Ikwo people (Enyibichiri), one week (7 days) to make sure that these children are returned.
“It is on that note that CAN is also making a special appeal to Enyibichiri and Ikwo people that long before the expiration of 7 days, to let CAN know the whereabouts of these children concretely and verifiably, alive or dead, that we may intervene in giving the State Government the report.
“CAN, in conjunction with Ebonyi State Government, is also asking all the citizens of Ebonyi State, and residents of Ebonyi State, to please go about their normal businesses and all who have left the State in fear should all come back to Ebonyi State capital.
“We join Ebonyi State Government to emphasize that any one found breaking stores, shops or houses, intimidating or threatening the residents, visitors, in Abakaliki urban - the capital of the State is taking laws into his or her hands and whenever apprehended, will follow the due process of the law.
“We therefore, ask all, especially our brothers from Enyibichiri and Enyigba to shield their swords and all should work together to see that peace returns permanently.
“In the course of the peace process, the Ikwo people made an observation, that most of their fears and worries are their brothers Ikwo, Enyibichiri Azuoffia, living in Cross River, who always step in to commit crimes that are too heavy as this, and they will be found wanting”, the communique stated.