by crossriverwatch admin
What could have been a bloody communal clash between the people of Ediba and Usumutong in Abi Local Government Area was averted on Monday by the combined effort and quick intervention of the Police, the Cross River State Security Adviser and the Chairman of Abi local government.
Crossriverwatch gathered that an Usumutong man raped a twelve year old girl from Ediba in the farm during the week and allegedly damaged her private parts. When the report of the incident got to the people of Ediba, their youths were said to have quickly mobilized and blocked the major road in the community wielding dangerous weapons and beating up every Usumutong indigene on sight.
A former councilor from Usumutong who went to broker peace in Ediba was manhandled and had his vehicle vandalized by the irate Ediba youths who were spoiling for war with their neighboring community.
Crossriverwatch further gathered that it was the quick intervention of the Mr. Bassey Rekpene, the State Security Adviser who personally went to Ediba and spent several hours going from door to door, urging the Ediba youths to allow the government to deal with the perpetrator of the alleged rape and not take laws into their hands.
He was said to have succeeded in pacifying the Ediba youths and security agents to have moved in forestall further threat to the peace of the neighboring communities.
The Chairman of Abi was also said to have moved swiftly to get the Usumutong people to identify the rapist who unconfirmed reports say has been arrested and is in police custody.
When crossriverwatch contacted the Police Public Relations Officer in Cross River State, DSP John Umoh, he said: “There was a report like that but the situation has been brought under control. I want to caution that people should express restraint whenever issues arise and not to take laws into their hands. People should follow the law and report their grievances to law enforcement agents, as no human society develops by violence”.
It will be recalled that last month, over two thousand people were rendered homeless in Abi Local Government in the communal crisis that engulfed Adadama in Abi and the neighboring Ikwo local government in Ebonyi State over land boundary.
In the invasion, about fifteen persons including women were slaughtered with some decapitated by the Ikwo invaders and their bodies are still lying in the mortuary.
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