Aguleri, Umuoba Anam communities clash over land | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Aguleri, Umuoba Anam communities clash over land

Posted: Apr 3, 2015 at 12:40 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Christian Emeka  / Special Correspondent, Awka 


Crisis has broken out between Aguleri and the neighbouring Umuoba Anam over a stretch of land close to the Anambra River.

The clash which broke out last weekend has resulted in the loss of a life, while 10 persons sustained various degrees of injuries.

Already, truck loads of policemen were seen guarding the area while the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hosea Karma, has met with the traditional rulers of the two communities imploring them to call their youths to order.

Anambra State, Governor Willie Obiano, had through his deputy, Dr Nkem Okeke, told newsmen that efforts are on to resolve all communal crises as peace is the best the state needed for development now.

Also, four houses, including the building housing the World Bank–assisted Anambra State FADAMA III Project, were burnt down, while the magnificent building housing Aguleri Micro Finance Bank was also torched.

Some dredging equipment, estimated to be over N50 million belonging to JCECAN Global Link Nigeria Ltd, as well as welding machines, rubber floaters, deep black hosts, batteries, 150 plastic chairs and 30 canopies for hiring, were set ablaze by the hoodlums.

One of the victims, Mr. Chibuko Ifediegwu, whose injury was said to be severe, was on admission at the Borommew Hospital, Onitsha.

A youth leader in Umuoba Anam, Mr. Sam Ifeatu, who narrated the incident to newsmen, said trouble started when somebody from Aguleri, simply called Obi, rechanneled filthy water from the town to the river spot where his people usually take their bath and collect water for their domestic use, instead of channelling it through the Aguleri end.

This, according to him, infuriated his people and they complained, but that the said Obi threatened them.

This led to a confrontation between youths of the two communities during which guns were freely used.

However, a community leader in Aguleri and a member of the Igwe Aguleri cabinet, Chief Ralph Igwa, said Umuoba Anam had no claim to any parcel of land in the area as the place they are presently residing was given to them by Aguleri people.

But if something is not done urgently, it may be a reoccurrence of the infamous Aguleri/Umuleri war between 1999 and 2002 in which hundreds of lives were lost, and property worth several billions destroyed.