Politics: Insecurity: Army invades another community in Ebonyi

Military pensioners want Wages Commission to investigate ‘illegal’ deductions from allowances

College of Education deserted as residents of Eha-Amufu communities flee

Troops of the Nigerian Army allegedly invaded Nkalaha community in Ishielu local government of Ebonyi State Monday morning and the residents are fleeing the community in droves according to reports by Sahara Reporters yesterday.

Nkalaha is a neighbouring community to the war-torn Ebor, Umujiovu, and Mgbuji communities in Eha-Amufu Isi-Uzo local government area of Enugu State.

The military invasion of Nkalaha community has forced residents of the community and Eha-Amufu internally displaced persons (IDPs) to flee from the soldiers and the herdsmen to Enugu town and Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital.

It has been earlier reported that hundreds of troops of the Nigerian Army invaded Obeagu community in the same Ishielu local government area of Ebonyi State.

They had allegedly arrested and gone away with 10 residents of the community who were motorcycle riders and youths trained to defend the community after armed herdsmen invasion of the community on March 29, 2021, and October 13, 2022, which claimed 22 lives including children and women.

On one of the community’s Facebook pages, one of the witnesses wrote: “Our community heads, councillor, and commissioner must as a matter of urgency call a town hall meeting for what happened in Nkalaha today. There must be an immediate resolution to the problem so that our community will remain peaceful”

Another community leader, Onyekachukwu Obeagu said that residents were fleeing the military onslaught. “As I speak to you now, my community has been completely deserted. Those who are remaining in the community are hiding in the bushes while some have fled the community.

“I cannot authoritatively say whether anybody was killed or not. Probably after the invasion, we will conduct a head count. Why are soldiers not confronting armed herdsmen that have sacked several communities in Eha-Amufu and rendered the city that has a population of over a hundred thousand desolate?”

College of Education Eha-Amufu deserted as residents flee

In a related development, the Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu in Enugu State has allegedly been deserted as students of the institution trooped home for fear of being killed in the herdsmen’s crisis. It was gathered that the abandoned houses are now vulnerable as criminals vandalize properties and cart away personal belongings of the displaced Eha-Amufu residents.

A source told Vanguard that the students vacated due to fear even before the Christmas holidays.

However, the Public Relations Officer of the institution, Chukwuebuka Obi, dismissed the claim as fake news, adding that students who left the College went home for Christmas holidays, and not for fear of being attacked.

A settler in Eha-Amufu, narrated that criminals broke through all the shops in their line on Sunday, looking for money and other items. She stated that food items were stolen by the burglars.

The latest attack by the herdsmen on Sunday had claimed the lives of seven people including two leaders of a vigilante group that had been protecting the community.

The unending attacks forced the remaining residents to flee the entire town, leaving it desolate.

A cleric, Pastor Emeka said yesterday that people were moving out of the community like an exodus. “What is happening in Eha-Amufu this morning is an exodus. It appeared that security agencies brought to Eha-Amufu are here to supervise the final destruction of Eha-Amufu. People are leaving Eha-Amufu to God’s know where. This is the final burial of Eha-Amufu yet we have a government in Enugu State.”

Another resident, Chisom Olinya said: “If the government cannot protect the people, why is the government deploying all the apparatus of the state force to destroy our youths in the name of fighting members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).”

Another resident, Nkechi Ebeh, a mother of five children and a native of the war-torn Ebor community, Eha-Amufu in Isi-Uzo local government area of Enugu State said she is one of the lucky survivors of the December 8, 2022, gruesome and vicious attack on her community by armed Fulani herdsmen.

Although she survived, her husband, Friday Ebeh, was among 25 people, all males that were massacred in their houses during an early morning attack.

She told journalists that she lost her husband and relatives to the December 8, 2022 massacre, adding that she only survived by God’s mercy.

“We were going to the farm on that fateful day when suddenly we saw some persons in their numbers holding guns and machetes marching to our community, Ebor. They first entered my village Ama-Obelebe. They started pursuing us which made me run back home. On getting to the house, I could not find my children and my husband at home.

“Later I discovered that my husband was among the people killed. In the evening I got information that my children were in Ama-Nkanu, a distant neighbouring community, which is very far from Eha-Amufu. My husband was buried when his corpse was discovered the next day,” she lamented.

She pleaded with the government to come to their aid as they would not live as Internally Displaced Persons forever.

Giving an insight on the December 8 invasion, another resident, Mr. Chukwudi Omeri revealed that about 10 people were killed in Ama-Obelebe village, including his brother, Mr. Friday Omeri, a father of nine.

“Since then, no one goes to the farm again. And this has brought hunger and hardship to the people.”

He stated that the attack on 8th December 2022, led to the death of 25 persons in Abor village. The victims were all men as the attackers never killed any woman during the attack.

“The aged men were not left in the attack as my age mate’s lifeless body was discovered and buried on Monday the 12th of December, 2022.

“We have not done anything to warrant these mindless killings; I’m not aware of any issue with Fulani herdsmen except that they want to chase us away from our ancestral land,” he lamented.

He equally alleged the attackers were assisted by the Agala people of Benue State.

He told journalists that “The said Agala people are so desperate to take over our lands as they have begun harvesting our palm fruits since the crisis started. The Agala people have common boundaries with the Eha-Amufu community, which may be what has necessitated the rift between the two communities.”

Think Enugu for business investments, Ugwuanyi tells investors

Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has urged investors to avail themselves of the friendly business and investment environment his administration has provided, to invest in the state.

Governor Ugwuanyi who pointed out the growing number of businesses and investments that have found their destination in Enugu State under his watch said that his administration has continued to serve as a business and investment enabler through the sustained provision of a pleasant business and investment environment underpinned by peace, security, consistent and favorable policies, friendly tax regime, robust infrastructure, and professional regulatory oversight.

The governor maintained that his administration since its inception has committed itself to create the enabling environment for businesses to thrive in the state, as well as implementing Business-friendly programmes to boost private investment, facilitate ease of doing business and stimulate economic activities.

Governor Ugwuanyi in his separate speeches during the inauguration of Hard Break Plus Hotel, Enugu, and Divine FM 101.3 Enugu, expressed delight that the business outfits are eloquent testimonies to his administration’s commitment to leverage private sector for job and wealth creation and revenue generation for the state.

The governor said that the new hotel, located at New Haven, Enugu, is a major boost to Enugu’s hospitality profile and a key contribution to the nation’s tourism sector.

He expressed confidence that the hotel can compete favourably with its counterpart anywhere in the world, “going by its serene ambiance, beautiful furnishing, and top-notch services.”

Congratulating the Board and Management of the establishment for extending the frontiers of their luxury brand to Enugu, Governor Ugwuanyi used the opportunity to appeal to investors, particularly Enugu indigenes, to emulate the aku luo uno philosophy of the Chairman of the hotel, Mr. Ikenna Okafor, and explore boundless business opportunities in the tourism sector of the state.

Welcoming Divine FM 101.3 Enugu to the Coal City with expectations of its impactful presence in the broadcast industry, job and wealth creations, and the state’s internal generation stream, Governor Ugwuanyi told the management, led by the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Mrs. Crystal Jane Cosmas, that “your decision to locate your Radio Station in Enugu is, therefore, a decision well made.”

The governor explained that the Enugu State One-Stop-Investment-Centre (OSIC), under the Enugu State Investment Development Authority (ESIDA) seamlessly facilitates all bureaucratic processes required for starting a business in the state.

Governor Ugwuanyi disclosed that many business and investment promoters have availed themselves of the unique opportunity by thinking of Enugu as a preferred destination in their location consideration.

.Ugwuanyi has repeatedly summoned emergency security meetings involving all the heads of security agencies in the state but nothing happened after the meeting as things continued to exacerbate.

However, Tuesday’s emergency security meeting signed by Governor Ugwuanyi’s Special Adviser on Information, Mr. Steve Oruruo was called in “furtherance with the State Government’s proactive interventions in the latest security concerns in Eha-Amufu communities.”

Oruruo in the public service announcement said that the meeting would be held on Tuesday, 20th December 2022 at the Lion Building Government House, Enugu.

It reads, “Due to the latest security concerns in Eha-Amufu communities, Isiuzo LGA, and in furtherance with the State Government’s proactive interventions, the following persons are hereby invited to an emergency security meeting with His Excellency, the Governor of Enugu State on Tuesday, 20th of December 2022 at Government House, Enugu.

“Chairman Isi-Uzo Local Government Council. Hon Commissioner For Commerce and Industry, and other top Government Officials from Eha-Amufu.

“The Bishop representing the members of the Clergy from Eha-Amufu. All other leaders were nominated by the various communities in Eha-Amufu.

“All invitees to this crucial meeting are expected to be seated by 2 pm on Tuesday, 20th December 2022 at the Lion Building Government House, Enugu.”

The post Insecurity: Army invades another community in Ebonyi appeared first on Vanguard News.

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