Peace has been restored in Ukele community in Yala Local Government Area of Cross River State and Igbeagu community in Izzi LGA of Ebonyi State, after several weeks of crisis.
Scores were killed and many houses destroyed as crisis erupted in the communities over boundary issues which left thousands of people displaced.
The peace move brought stakeholders of both states to a crucial meeting at Mfuma in Cross State where a peace pact was reached and signed by the affected communities of both states. With the presence of the National Boundary Commission, NBC at the meeting, both states agreed to bury the hatchet and live as one.
The gathering provoked feelings of nostalgia, considering that both states were part of the Old Ogoja provinces in the country. The National Boundary Commission, NBC, invited all the key stakeholders of Ebonyi and Cross River states to the headquarters of the Commission in Abuja on 11th July, 2018 to attend a crucial meeting which is aimed at bringing permanent solution to the lingering communal clash between Igbeagu community in Izzi local government area of Ebonyi state and Ukele community in Yala LGA of Cross River state.
Addressing a joint meeting of officials on Ebonyi/Cross River Interstate Boundary at Mfuma in Cross State, the Director-General of NBC, Dr. Mohammad Ahmad described the clash between Ukele and Igbeagu communities of both states as saddening and unfortunate.
“We have agreed that we will open health centres, markets and schools. We have agreed to surrender our arms which would be worked out by the communities and security operatives. We have agreed to set up peace and security committees involving both states. They will be meeting alternatively in both sides of the divide.”
In his remarks, the Deputy Governor of Ebonyi State and Chairman, Ebonyi State Boundary Committee, Dr. Kelechi Eric Igwe called on the NBC to expedite action towards the demarcation of the disputed land as peace was pivotal to the continued existence and development of both states.
Credit – Peter Okutu (The Vanguard)