Ebonyi Diaspora Group Decries Killing, Destruction Of Properties In Renewed Crisis, Demands Buhari’s Intervention
Scores of persons were on Wednesday murdered, with property worth millions of naira destroyed in renewed clashes by rival groups in Effium community in Ebonyi State.
The destruction, which has been described as senseless and barbaric, was reportedly carried out by militia men.
Reacting to the renewed clashes, the Association of Ebonyi State indigenes in the Diaspora condemned the violence, stating that the “attacks on defenseless citizens have claimed hundreds of lives and led to loss of several properties worth millions of naira since January 22nd 2021, when the first incident was reported.”
In a chat with journalists in Abuja on Thursday, the group made up of interest blocks from the state called on President Muhammadu Buhari to quickly intervene in the malaise, insisting that “the incident could have been averted if the government had lived up to its responsibility of protecting lives and properties.”
President of the group, Amb. Paschal Oluchukwu, also condemned stakeholders in the state for buck-passing while innocent lives, particularly those of persons from Ezza are slaughtered.
“AESID is deeply saddened that under the present Umahi administration, the lives of Ebonyians are as worthless as a tissue paper.
“We recall advising the state government in January on the urgent and genuine steps it must take to tackle and resolve this crisis tracing it back to the actual root of the conflict. Two months after, the Umahi government obviously seem to have taken sides with those they consider the enemies of Ezza nation like it was the case of Ezillo in 2010 in perfecting what we may call it’s ‘secret war against the majority and dominant clan’ in Ebonyi state- the Ezza nation. We may be right if we conclude that this is part of the politics and mind games ahead of the 2023 elections in the Salt of the nation,” Oluchukwu stated.
AESID added that it is generally concerned that “the level of widespread insecurity and growing apprehension that the state had suffered in recent time is very alarming and quite pathetic that our once peaceful state could almost be compared to Zamfara and other Northern states held hostage by bandits and terrorists.
“We are duty-bound to reflect that when these violent killings that have led to the death of hundreds of many unarmed and harmless Ezza natives who were completely taken unawares started, the first impression the Governor gave was that it was a mere fight between two factions over who controls Effium motor park. But investigations have revealed contrary.”
The group further added that it has petitioned the authorities concerning the situation, adding over 15, 000 Ezzans have been displaced due to the crisis; and that the displaced are still stranded in different parts of the state without any succour as those who have nowhere to run to are being secretly murdered.
While the group cautioned against allowing citizens to resort to self-help, it blamed the state government over what it described as a deliberate refusal to solve the perennial clashes.
“Governor Umahi already knows that the simple solution to this problem is to order the arrest and uncompromising trial of the said Clement Odaah and keep him behind bars without any form of communication with his ‘local and hired warlords’ who should themselves also be arrested and duly tried.
“We wonder what is so difficult about taking this simple step to end the crisis as the Chief Security Officer of the State if not that some powerful persons in government may be behind the carnage,” the group reiterated