By Nwogha Ndubuisi Andy

Not less than eight persons have been confirmed killed and more than 60 others arrested following clashes between Effium and Ezza Effium communities in Ohaukwu Local Government Area, Ebonyi state.

Confirming the report, the State Commissioner of Police, Aliyu Garba,on Sunday 24th January,2020 made the disclosure during a joint security operation, which included the state Deputy Governor, Dr. Kelechi Igwe, to the affected areas.

Commissioner Garba, while stating that normalcy had returned to the communities, also confirmed that about eight houses, including a petrol station, were Razed down.

According to him:“The crisis was fuelled by a leadership tussle at the area’s branch of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, involving old and new executives.

“The police have ensured adequate security and I doubt if anything would breach the peace in the areas again,” he said.

Women and Children flee from the mayhem

The police commissioner said that the presence of a joint security operation in the area would send a signal to the perpetrators of the dastardly acts that the force was ‘on ground’.

“It will also avert a re-occurrence of the clashes, and after investigations, the suspects will appear in court for prosecution.

“I can also confirm the arrest of stakeholders from the areas and anyone found culpable will be duly prosecuted,” he said.

Corroborating the report, Hon. Stanley Okoro-Emegha, Commissioner for Internal Security, Border, Peace and peace Resolution, commended the police, noting that their proactive response had helped in restoring normalcy to the areas.

“The commissioner of police has shown that he meant business, as he pleaded with the leaders and the people to allow peace reign, but unfortunately, they did not heed to the advice.

“We conducted a joint operation, which led to the arrest of the suspects. Even those in government, who were involved in the crisis, will be duly prosecuted,” he said.

He chided those giving political coloration to the clashes, noting that the government had shown enough resolve to duly prosecute the culprits, no matter their political affiliations.

The deputy governor, however, called for calm, saying that government would ensure that the situation was permanently nipped in the bud.