The death toll of the communal clash between the people of Ojiogu and Okpochiri Ukwagba Ngbo in Ohaukwu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, Wednesday, has risen to 18, since the Ebonyi boundary dispute commenced.
According to the investigation, so far, the affected communities were attacked within the boundary area between Ebonyi and Benue States by the Ezzas.
Speaking during a telephone interview with pressmen, the Town Union President of Ukwagba community, Eze Moses Ekpe, confirmed that the death toll so far was 18 and that the search for the victims of the attack was still ongoing.
His words: ‘As I told you, we are still searching for the victims. So far, the bodies we have are up to 18 in number. The attack has led to the destruction of properties worth millions of naira.
Meanwhile, after the ugly incident which occurred on Monday 27th June 2022, the state government had a meeting behind closed doors with the stakeholders of the troubling Ebonyi boundary dispute at the Government House, Abakaliki.
The meeting was chaired by the Ebonyi State Deputy Governor, Dr Kelechi Eric Igwe, while the following stakeholders were in attendance: Pastor Eze Nwachukwu Eze, Chief Frederick Omeh, Dr Okey C. Oke, Bishop Lawson Elom, Barr Chief Emmanuel Igboke, Hon . Fredick Onwe. Chief Godwin Okpoto, Mr Eze Ekpe, Hon Chinedu Awo, Hon Uzim Bernard Nwankwo, Chief Boniface Nwali, Mr. Amechi Alo, Hon Monday Nwenyim, Hon. Titus Nwenyi, Hon Mrs Eucharia Ogwale and Mr Emmanuel Nwankwo.
The following people where also invited to be a part of the meeting: Pastor Eze Nwachukwu Eze, Chief Frederick Omeh, Dr Okey C. Oke, Bishop Lawson Elom, Barr Chief Emmanuel Igboke, Hon . Fredick Onwe. Chief Godwin Okpoto, Mr Eze Ekpe, Hon Chinedu Awo, Hon Uzim Bernard Nwankwo, Chief Boniface Nwali, Mr. Amechi Alo, Hon Monday Nwenyim, Hon. Titus Nwenyi, Hon Mrs Eucharia Ogwale and Mr Emmanuel Nwankwo.
The following people were also summoned for the meeting: the chairman of Ohaukwu Local Government Area, Hon Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Hon Commissioner for Water Resources, Special Consultant to Ebonyi state Government on security, Permanent Secretary ministry of internal security, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Legal Mathers and Conflict Resolution.
As at press time, the outcome of the meeting was not yet made public, but many people believe that part of the reason for convening it was to address the growing spate of insecurity, especially as numerous lives had been lost owing to the Ebonyi Boundary dispute.
According to the President General, due to the level at which the Ebonyi boundary dispute has reached, they are appealing to the government to assist the community in beefing up security, because as far as they were concerned, the attack came from none other than the Ezza people.
The Ohaukwu Local Government Council chairman, Clement Odah on his part, has called for calm just as he strongly condemned the Ebonyi Boundary dispute and all the destruction that trailed the clashes.
The Chairman of Ado Local Government Area of Benue state, James Oche still expressed shock over the incident, insisting that his people had nothing with the Ebonyi Boundary dispute.
All efforts made to get the State Commissioner of Police, Garba Aliyu and the Command’s Public Relations Officer, Chris Anyanwu to react, proved abortive.