By Nwogha Ndubuisi, Abakaliki

Following the unwarranted killings going on at Effium/EzzaEffium Community of Ohaukwu council area, Ebonyi state government has announced the suspension of it’s projects until normalcy returned to the zone.

According to the release issued by the state Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Barr. Orji Uchenna Orji, the state government took the decision due to the people’s neglect to the government effort in bringing peace to the community.

The release reads: “The State Executive Council in it’s meeting of 31st August, 2021, received a brief on the state of affairs in the communal dispute between Effium and EzzaEffium in Ohaukwu local Government Area and noted with displeasure that their stakeholders and youths are not truly committed to peaceful co-existence despite the interventions by government and efforts of security agencies to bring to a halt all hostilities in that community”.

“It is noteworthy to mention that the State Government in considering the conditions of the people especially the aged and other vulnerable persons did set aside the sum of Hundred Million Naira (100,000,000,00) in the first instance to rehabilitate these helpless people both at Effium and Ezza Effium with a view to mitigating the socio- economic conditions of the people”.

“Wherefore, Executive Council considered that whereas the State Government has sought the opinions of Effium and Ezza Effium leaders on the project for the rehabilitation of their people, Ezza Effium agreed for the building projects for the affected persons whereas Effium natives resisted any such projects in any part of Effium; whereas they have failed to agree on the project that will be mutually beneficial to Effium and Ezza Effium and whereas Government has noticed unwarranted incidents of attack on the military and police formations assigned to restore peace and order in the afflicted community, Government condemns the disagreement by the stakeholders of both groups of Effium/Ezza Effium community and the senseless attacks especially on the security agencies deployed to ensure the security of the people of Effium/ Ezza Effium”.

“Government and other well meaning leaders of the State including Elders Council, Founding Fathers, Religious leaders and the Deputy Governor together with the members of the Panel of Inquiry on the Effium/Ezza Effium communal disturbances have done everything possible to stop this needless carnage. It is therefore obvious that the stakeholders and the youths are the reason for these lingering disputations”.

” Government will continue to do everything possible to protect the lives and properties of the people of Effium/Ezza Effium”.

“However, Executive Council took a decision to withdraw the said sum of N100m pending when the two groups will submit to the part of peace. Executive Council further took a decision that without prejudice to the elected public servants, no person from Effium/Ezza-Effium shall be appointed into the state public service till such a time government is convinced about their commitment to peace in their community. Government may consider stopping further execution of government infrastructural programmes in that community until total peace is returned”