Panic As Three Die In Fresh Abia, Akwa Ibom Boundary Clash
Three lives have been reportedly lost and four others have been abducted following a renewed boundary violence on Friday, January 22, 2021, between Usaka Uko in Ikwuano Local Government Area of Abia State and Nkari in Ini Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.
It was gathered that the crisis occurred when some suspected Usako Uko youths allegedly invaded the Nkari homes, shot and carted away their motorcycles.
The latest crisis comes after a similar incident of August 2020 where about 11 persons were allegedly killed and scores injured.
Speaking with the leadership of the Civil Liberties Organisation led by its chairman, Franklyn Isong, a former councillor in Nkari Ward 4, Benjamin Akpan described the invasion as devastating.
“Last Friday which was our market day, our attackers laid ambush and killed our people. They killed my younger brother, even the other of my relative with her husband. We found their corpses this morning. I’m sure they both went to the early market
“Four persons who were said to have passed the road could not be found as I’m speaking with you now. Maybe they were abducted because we have not seen them. The issue is beyond our community. How can we be living in perpetual fear in our father’s land?."
In the same vein, a member representing Ini State Constituency at the State House of Assembly, Emmanuel Bassey, said the crisis between the two has lingered for too long adding that he has made spirited efforts including moving a motion in the floor of the house to bring the crisis to an end.
“In my first and second term in the State House of Assembly, I’ve moved a motion of urgent public importance on the need to rescue the people of Nkari. I told the floor in October last year that if the crisis was not addressed it would worsen and deteriorate to the extent that we won’t be able to manage it.
“One of my prayers was that the National Boundary Commission should come and finish the work they started about seven years ago. What that place needed was a complete demarcation".
On his part, the Clan Head of the Nkari clan, His Highness Udoette Edon, called on the state government to construct the Mbiabong/Nkari road in order to link Nkari people to their kids and kins in Akwa Ibom State, noting that lack of motorable road contributes to the attacks the Nkari people are facing from the people of Usaka Uko.
The monarch called on the state and federal government to come to the aid of the people of Nkari by providing them with electricity, potable water, primary and secondary school, healthcare facilities.
Responding, the CLO Chairman, Franklyn Isong called on Governor Emmanuel to look into the plight of Nkari people as the place showed a total disconnect from the basic amenities such as good road, healthcare centre, school, potable water and electricity which are seen in other parts of the state.
He also called on the federal government to take over the land and site industries so that everybody will have peace.
When contacted through telephone, the Akwa Ibom State Police Public Relations Officer, Odiko Macdon confirmed the crisis but added that normalcy has returned to the area through the efforts of the Police Commissioners of both Abia and Akwa Ibom States.
He, however, could not confirm any casualty as his men said they didn’t see any corpse in the area.
“I’m speaking from official channel, I can’t confirm any death because we didn’t see any dead body anywhere, but there was a crisis at Nkari and the situation is calm now by the efforts of the Commissioner of Police and stakeholders from both States,” the PPRO said.