By CrossRiverWatch admin
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani has said that he is irredeemably ashamed of the communal war between his village, Nko and neighbouring Mkpani, the home town of a former governor of the state, Mr. Clement Ebri, all in Yakurr Local Government of Cross River state.
At the wake of the crises, several prominent individuals from Yakurr and across the state have condemned the recurring violence and called for calm but the Minister had been accused of keeping mute over the matter with insinuations that the several politics may be involved in the crises.
In a letter dated May 3, 2016 which the Minister wrote to the traditional rulers of the two communities, Obol Lopon of Nko and the Obol Lopon of Mkpani, he appealed to the feuding parties to exercise restraints and eschew further damages to lives and properties.
The letter which was obtained by CrossRiverWatch, reads: “At the wake of possible breakdown of peace in our two communities based on developments of alleged misdeeds and counter allegations on 29th day of April, 2016; I made attempts to call you and some opinion leaders in our communities as sounds of tension were rising.
“Though some of the call were unsuccessful, I had suggested an inter community visitation aimed at dialogue to allow for due investigation for the claims to be verified. Until sometime beyond 12 midnight on the said date, I was still trying the contacts I was making. Some of the personalities I tried to reach include H.E. Mr. Clement Ebri and Hon. Bassey Inah Ibor.
“Unfortunately, in the morning of 30th (April) the situation had escalated to a point of open violent conflict. However, Hon. Bassey Ibor called me the following day to acknowledge his view of my attempt to reach him at night.
“At this point is was certain that we needed to engage the lawful security agencies to quell the crises. Since then, I had been anxiously engaging the Nigeria Police Force as often as I heard any information that could assist them in the due discharge of their duties.
“I use this opportunity to urge you to convey messages of restraint to our people in order to eschew further damages to lives and property. I am irredeemably ashamed of these developments at my locality when we are expected to show optimum understanding and working relations.
“I hereby decry the insinuations of political underpinning in this irresponsible conduct. Ascribing political notions to barbarism is an attempt to downplay criminality. We had just finished an election which held on the 12th day of March, 2016 without this level of breakdown of law and order. It would have sounded sensible to attribute any eventuality of that period to politics, not this unnecessary misadventure of blind retrogression.
“I urge you to take all of us to task of any sort within legitimate and moral limits to end this ugly occurrence. We hope that you will direct your efforts toward this necessity.”
The crises have since been quelled amidst allegations that unconfirmed number soldiers and civilians were feared dead. Both communities are now been guarded heavily armed security personnel.
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