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Three die in C’River, A’Ibom youths land tussle


At least three persons have lost their lives in renewed communal clash over disputed land between the people of Oku-Iboku in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State and their Ikot-Offiong neighbours of Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State.

Southern City News gathered on Tuesday that commercial vehicles abandoned the route, while the few that managed to pass through had harrowing experience.
But the police immediately denied the report of death, insisting that the situation had been brought under control.
As early as 7am on Monday, the busy Itu-Bridge end of the Calabar-Itu Road was said to have been blocked by the rampaging youths.
It was learnt that vehicles were forced to park by the road side for several hours when the news of the clash broke but those that were caught in between the warring communities had their vehicles destroyed by gun-wielding youths.
Warring youths at both ends of the bridge were said to have tied red ribbons and displayed sophisticated weapons, according to an eyewitness, Charles Okpa, whose vehicle was destroyed.
An indigene of Ikot Offiong in Calabar, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the renewed clash started on Monday.
“The federal and state governments should step in and declare the disputed areas a buffer zone. For years, both communities engaged in communal clashes that claimed several lives and property worth millions of naira,” he said.
Another indigene of the community, Bassey Nsa, said he had lost two cousins and a neighbour since the renewed hostility started.
But the Cross River State Police Public Relations Officer, Irene Ugbo, who confirmed the clash, said that there were no deaths.
“We are aware of the development and we are on ground. The Commissioner of Police has drafted troops to the troubled areas and the situation has been brought under control. We did not hear of killings otherwise there would have been calls. The road has been opened to motorists and I am certain that peace has returned,” she said.least three persons have lost their lives in renewed communal clash over disputed land between the people of Oku-Iboku in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State and their Ikot-Offiong neighbours of Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State.
Southern City News gathered on Tuesday that commercial vehicles abandoned the route, while the few that managed to pass through had harrowing experience.
But the police immediately denied the report of death, insisting that the situation had been brought under control.
As early as 7am on Monday, the busy Itu-Bridge end of the Calabar-Itu Road was said to have been blocked by the rampaging youths.
It was learnt that vehicles were forced to park by the road side for several hours when the news of the clash broke but those that were caught in between the warring communities had their vehicles destroyed by gun-wielding youths.
Warring youths at both ends of the bridge were said to have tied red ribbons and displayed sophisticated weapons, according to an eyewitness, Charles Okpa, whose vehicle was destroyed.
An indigene of Ikot Offiong in Calabar, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the renewed clash started on Monday.
“The federal and state governments should step in and declare the disputed areas a buffer zone. For years, both communities engaged in communal clashes that claimed several lives and property worth millions of naira,” he said.
Another indigene of the community, Bassey Nsa, said he had lost two cousins and a neighbour since the renewed hostility started.
But the Cross River State Police Public Relations Officer, Irene Ugbo, who confirmed the clash, said that there were no deaths.
“We are aware of the development and we are on ground. The Commissioner of Police has drafted troops to the troubled areas and the situation has been brought under control. We did not hear of killings otherwise there would have been calls. The road has been opened to motorists and I am certain that peace has returned,” she said.
Source :punch