The Governor of Ebonyi State, Mr. David Umahi, blew hot on Wednesday over the recent crises in Afikpo South Local government Area, challenging the Police and other security agencies in the State to wake up and bring it to an end.
No less than two persons have so far lost their lives in Afikpo South Local Government Area of the State over alleged cult crises, suspected to be politically motivated.
Governor Umahi during a Statewide broadcast on Wednesday described the development as unacceptable, and accused the Department of State Services and Police of not doing much to stem the trend.
He emphasised that such senseless killing of persons in the State would no longer be condoned, and expressed his willingness to sign for the execution for anyone found culpable in the barbaric acts.
He warned that he would follow the matter to the end, sparing no sacred cow in a bid to prove a point.
Umahi said: “I am not happy over what is going on in Afikpo South.
“And I want to challenge the security agencies to stand up, make arrests, keep them, get court order and do proper investigation.
“Take them to court, I will sign something for their execution.
“I will do it to prove a point in Afikpo South.
“What is going on there is not acceptable.
“These lives that are being lost are not chickens, and if you check very well, it is as a result of political squabbles.
“We had it so much in Ohaukwu, and God has brought that one down.
“I accuse the SSS and CP, that if you put your feet down, without minding if that person is my son or is my brother, or is my supporter or my enemy, we will solve this problem.
“Please, I give you a marching order, no matter who calls, even if anybody calls from Abuja, I am the Chief Security Officer, and I say there must be a comprehensive investigation of the killings in that place and anybody can be arrested.
“Please, this nonsense must stop.
“How can we continue to talk about cultism in that place?
“It must stop, please, and I need to be briefed on daily basis on this.”
Meanwhile, the Ebonyi State Police Command had on Monday confirmed the death of a young man whose name was simply identified as Dunk, at Asaga village, Owutu community in the Afikpo South LGA of the state on Sunday over alleged cult clashes.
The Police also confirmed that the Chairman of Afikpo South Local Government Area, Eni-Uduma Chima, and the member representing Afikpo South (East) Constituency in the Ebonyi State House of Assembly, Hon. Chidi Ejem, were invited for questioning over their alleged involvement in the crises.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Awosola Awotinde, who made the confirmation to journalists on Monday in Abakaliki, added that the two politicians were arrested alongside other persons in connection with the clashes.
Awotunde said: “The cult clashes took place at Asaga-Owutu Edda in Afikpo South Local Government Area and it warranted the the killing of one man, called Dunk.
“There was actually a clash in Afikpo South.
“We have arrested the Chairman of the local government area, one House of Assembly member representing the area, and another honourable.
“We have dispatched our men there to ensure peace return, and we are still investigating the matter.”
A reliable source from the area told The Eagle Online that the killing was as a result of differences between two cult groups at Asaga Owutu Edda in Afikpo South local Government Area.
The source further noted that the cult clashes were suspected to be politically motivated, adding that many other persons were injured during the clashes, which lasted more than two hours on Sunday night.
He identified the real name of the victim as Onu Ukpai Chima.
However, all effort to reach the council chairman and the lawmaker proved abortive as their phones were switched off and text messages sent to their mobiles were yet to be responded to as at press time.
Further on Wednesday morning, The Eagle Online learnt of another death in the area of one young man identified as Raphael, who was alleged to have been shot by the elder brother of the first victim in a reprisal.
Further investigation revealed that both the Council boss, Chima and the Honourable member, Ejem, had been at loggerheads for a long time.
Their differences has created a big crack in their political relationship in spite of the fact that they were elected on the same political platform: Peoples Democratic Party.