Over two hundred homes in Ngbo community, Ohaukwu local government area of Ebonyi State at the weekend has fled community over invasion of unidentified armed men in military uniform.
Recall that the invasion of the community by the said armed men, took place shortly after some weeks, there was a renewed war between Ngbo people and their neighbouring Agila, in Ardo local government area of Benue state.
Recall also that the war between the two states was as a result of boundary disputes and has lasted for over one hundred years, and hundreds of human lives was killed while properties worth billions of naira destroyed.
The two communities usually attack each other from time to time. And several efforts have been made by the two states governments to end the protracted war but all to no avail.
However, the people of Ngbo, yesterday alleged that the said armed men from Agila invaded their community with a fleet of branded Army Hilux Vans in a commando style few days after they were allegedly attacked by Agila people , destroying lives and properties worth millions of naira.
One of the leaders of the Ngbo community, who spoke to journalists at the weekend, Mr. Agbo Ogala lamented that the invasion of the armed men has injected fears into the minds of the people and compelled the villagers to run for their dear lives.
Ogala alleged that the development has left them with no option than to vacate their homes and squat in the neighboring villages.
‘’We were thrown into panic and confusion when on Tuesday, 25th
February, 2020 and Thursday, 27th February, 2020 we saw a number of armed military men surveying our village with fleet of Army Hilux
Vans, and you know the Agila people of Benue State just attacked us a day ago. Two days after that, Thursday to be précised, the Army came again and carried out the same suspicious parade and survey. So we became confused on what could have brought the Army without notice, not even the Police. That suggests something to us.
“We are worried that after the survey visit of the Army, the Agila
Militia came and attacked us again, this time in a very severe manner. And I must tell you that we are worried over the coincidence of invasion of the Army and attacks by the Agila militia before and after the invasion ‘’, Ogala lamented.
Another Community Leader from Umuogudu Akpu and the Chairman, Vigilante Committee, Mr Esheya Attah expressed dismay over the recent offensive attacks on Ngbo by the Agila militias and the invasion of the suspected Military men.
He regretted that while the Ngbo people are committed to the peace
process, their Agila neighbours have sustained attacks on the people leading to loss of many lives and properties.
Attah alleged that the Ngbo people have received earlier information that top military officers from Agila are making plans to use the military machineries to lunch attacks against Ngbo people.
He alleged that the baton of soldiers that paraded around Umuogudu Akpu Community and other parts of Ngbo is giving credence to the earlier information as it could be part of the arrangements to study ground before unleashing mayhem on the people.
‘’ This recent attacks on Ngbo people took place about one day before the military came and another one came two days after they came. And these recent attacks were quite unusual, highly coordinated, such that we are thinking that something is wrong somewhere. This is a war zone and you know, this type of action cannot be taken for granted. They have much strength in the Army and we think they want to fight us with what they have ’’ Attah added.
He called on the government and the Military High Command to investigate this planned attack to avoid further loss of lives.
Speaking to journalists, the Traditional Ruler of Umuogudu Akpu
Commuinity, H.R.H Eze Godwin Ogba expressed displeasure over the
invasion and the accompanying attacks by the Agila people before and after the military invaded the community.
He lamented that the people of Ngbo are now living in fears more than before with this development of suspected military involvement in the Ngbo-Agila communal clash.
He called on the military hierarchy to caution their men from Agila axis not to bring bad name to the Army.