From Zara Nwachinaemere, Abakaliki
A group, Ezza-Effium Consultative Forum (ECF), on Monday, accused Effium people of flouting the ceasefire pact reached in the ongoing reconciliation efforts of Ebonyi state government.
In a recent meeting with governor David Umahi, stakeholders of both communities, in Ohaukwu local government area of Ebonyi state, reached an agreement to ceasefire in the Ezza, Ezza-Effium clash which has led to the death of many and the destruction of properties.
But the Forum’s Chairman, Mr. Aligwe Mathias Chukwuma, and the Secretary, Mr. Bernard Orichi, while briefing journalists in Abakaliki, alleged that despite the ceasefire agreement reached, Effium warriors had continued to launch attacks, killing scores of Ezza-Effium people and setting their houses ablaze, daily.
They alleged that 85% of security agents posted in Effium community had been hijacked by the Ohaukwu Council Chairman, Mr Clement Odah, who were allegedly using them to secure his home town, and his residence, adding that the security agents were aiding Effiumite warriors to attack Ezza-Effium people.
When contacted, Ohaukwu council chairman, Hon. Timothy Odah who is from Effium community, dismissed the allegation that he hijacked 85 person security men post to the to his protect his personal property as figment of the group’s imagination.
“Police is a regimental organization, they work according to specific instructions. The CP gives them directives… “No civilian has power to control the police. I advise the group to go to Effium and see things for themselves and if possible give assistance to the displaced people. “Those people giving press conference are causing more damage than those fighting in the bush. I commend security agents they are doing there work professionally” he said.
The group appealed to State government to call the Effium people to order by cautioning them to desist from violating the ceasefire agreement.
The Ezza-Effium Consultative Forum further warned that if Effium warriors refused to desist from attacking and killing their people, they might not continue to fold their hands and watch them wipe their people out of existence.
The chairman said, “First, we wish to publicly condemn this needless crisis and everyone directly or indirectly behind it. We pray God to expose and punish anybody who has hands in this ongoing pogrom in our dear and once peaceful community.
“However, we have observed with dismay, some disturbing developments that we felt there is need to alert the public before it is too late.
“You could recall that on February 23, 2021, the governor of Ebonyi State, Dr. David Umahi convened separate meetings with stakeholders of Ezza and that of Effium at Ecumenical Centre and the old EXCO Chambers, Government House, Abakaliki, respectively; with the aim of finding lasting solution to the needless crisis that erupted in our community. Ends