Category Archives: Community Reports

ENUGU: Oruku community protest killing of their king by policemen

The Oruku Community indigenes on Monday stormed the premises of Enugu State Government House to protest the killing of their traditional ruler, Igwe Emmanuel Mbah, alleging police complicity in the murder of the royal father on December 26, 2020.

Two weeks incident, the Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi had inaugurated a judicial Commission of Inquiry headed by Justice Harold Eya to investigate into the remote and immediate cause of the brutal murder of the royal father.

The protest took off as early as 8am , the Community had besieged the main entrance to the Government House demanding that the police should be excluded in the judicial commission of inquiry as set up by the state government, pointing fingers at police complicity in the murder of their royal father on December 26, 2020.

The protesters who were mostly old men and women, came to Government House in four loaded 508 buses and other vehicles

In presenting their petition, the Chairman of Oruku Caretaker Committee, Chief Ikenna Martin Nwatu, appealed to the Chief of Staff, Government House, Enugu, Dr Festus Uzo, who stood in for Governor Ugwuanyi, to come to their aid in fishing out the killers of their ruler for justice to reign.

“We, the people of Oruku are begging you to assist us in getting justice for Igwe Emmanuel Mbah who was brutally murdered. We do not trust the police investigation into the killing of late Igwe Emmanuel Mbah”

“We plead with you to use your good office to ensure that the Department of Security Service (DSS) is involved in the investigation so that justice will prevail”

“We are now in fear as the killing of traditional ruler shows that nobody is safe in our community any more. It is not war between Oruku and Umuode communities but war within the community. It is an internal war. Our houses and other valuable property are burnt and nobody is talking. It is sponsored by some of our public figures who feel they must rule us at all cost”

Responding, the Chief of Staff, Dr Uzor, commended the villagers for being law abiding in their demonstration, reminding them that the state government had since set up a judicial commission of inquiry with a view to getting the culprits as well as restoring a lasting peace in the community.

Dr Uzor reminded the protesters that his boss, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, in setting up the panel, urged the people of the community to walk the way of peace, which his administration had strived to maintain and nurture in the state.

His words: “I will convey your message to our Governor, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and I am sure he will listen to your demand. However, I have to correct an impression. The police is not part of the judicial commission. The police is doing their own independent investigation. The DSS is also doing theirs.

“You recall that the terms of reference of the panel constituted by Governor Ugwuanyi, is in pursuant to Section 4(1) of the Commission of Inquiry Law, Cap. 24, Revised Laws of Enugu State 2004, and it included to ascertain the number of persons killed or injured, identify persons, group or institutions who either by acts or omissions were directly or indirectly involved in, or sponsored the crisis, and investigate any other matter(s) that may come to the knowledge of the Panel in the course of the inquiry, not covered in these terms of reference.

“Others are to make recommendations regarding persons whom the Panel finds culpable and/or blameworthy in connection with the crisis, and generally make recommendations, in the light of its findings, on how to prevent similar crisis in future and make other recommendations which the panel may consider appropriate in view of its findings”

It was also observed that the unhappy natives marched to Enugu State House of Assembly Complex where they presented their matter before returning to their community.

At the State House of Assembly, the Spokesman of the Community told the Clerk of the House, Dr Emma Udaya, who received them on behalf of the Speaker, Honourable Edward Ubosi, pointed that leadership crisis was the main issue of the crisis, indicating that some powerful could be behind the killing of the traditional ruler.

Although the House was not in session, Dr Udaya promised to convey their message to the Speaker of the House.

‘You are doing well’, Gov Ikpeazu tells Abia lawmaker, Ginger Onwusibe

Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, has commended the member representing Isiala Ngwa North State Constituency, Chief Ginger Onwusibe, for quality representation of his people at the grassroots.

Governor Ikpeazu made the commendation while commissioning a new mini stadium built by Chief Ginger Onwusibe at Isiala Ngwa North LGA, which also coincided with the 5th annual National Convention of “Otawike Youth Initiative”.

The Governor who urged the people of Isiala Ngwa North to be steadfast in PDP and in their support for his administration, said they should ensure they vote for the party’s candidates in the forthcoming December 18 LG elections.

The State Chief Executive informed that he would assist Ginger Onwusibe in implementing developmental projects in the area to further bring succour to the people at the grassroots.

Also Speaking, the Speaker, Abia State House of Assembly, Chief Chinedum Orji, commended Chief Ginger Onwusibe for complementing the efforts of Government in bringing democratic dividends to the people of the area.

In their separate speeches, the Chairman of the occasion and member representing Arochukwu/ Ohafia Federal Constituency, Uko Nkole and his Isialangwa North and South counterpart, Chief Darlington Nwokocha, called on other well meaning Abians to always support government in attracting meaningful projects to their areas with a view to complementing efforts of government at the grassroots.

In his address, the host and member representing Isiala Ngwa North State Constituency, Ginger Onwusibe, said his vision of establishing the mini stadium was to bring development to his people, and thanked the Governor for making the project a reality.

Chief Onwusibe also thanked Governor Ikpeazu for awarding the Umueze-Ururuka Road as well as his caterpillar revolution across the length and breadth of the state.

CULT WAR: Edo Govt, community& religious leaders meet over insecurity, as police deploy 877 new constables

As part of efforts to tackle rising insecurity to safeguard lives and property in Edo State, government officials on Monday met with traditional, religious and community leaders in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area (LGA) to chart a path on the new community-based security scheme in the area.

This is as the first batch of 877 of the 2000 community constables trained at the Nigeria Police Training School are being deployed to various communities to work with local community arrangements to ensure effective coordination and keep criminals out of the state.

Present at the meeting, which took place at the Council’s Secretariat in Idogbo, were elders, dukes (Enigie), religious and opinion leaders and the Edo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo.

The stakeholders also inaugurated the Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Council Vigilante to assist security personnel in fighting crime in the area.

Chairman of Ikpoba-Okha LGA, Dr. Eric Osayande, who spoke to journalists after the meeting, noted: “The Governor had given us a directive that we must call all the Odionwere, Enigie, Oka-Idun and other stakeholders to ask them to go back to the traditional methods of Vigilante.”

“We have recruited 70 Vigilante to complement the efforts of conventional security apparatus in the Local Government”, he said.

Addressing stakeholders at the meeting, Kokumo, conveyed the approval of the deployment of police constables who had their passing out parade on Saturday to the locality.

He said the operatives were drawn from the various communities in Ikpoba-Okha LGA and its environs, in addition to a joint patrol team, comprising the military, the Nigerian Army, operatives of Department of State Security (DSS), and Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC).

“I have also promised the Local Government Chairman that we are also going to have the police constables who had their passing out parade on Saturday here. They were drawn from the various communities.”

According to him, “There is a downward trend of crime and criminality in this community. We are living no stone unturned towards ensuring that we dominate the public space.

“We are having a joint patrol team, comprising the military, the Army, DSS and the NSCDC.”

The state police chief, Kokumo, warned that “never again will anybody attack any police personnel in Edo. Enough is enough”.

He stressed that: “We will no longer fold our arms or allow criminal elements to open fire on our men. Our personnel will use their arms professionally. We have a justification to use our firearms when a life is in danger.”

PHOTOS: Prince Lawrence Ezeh charges Enugu Youths to take power, donates bus to Group

The chairman of Buzuzu
Construction Company Limited, and Price of Mburubu ancient Kingdom, Engineer Lawrence Ezeh has charged youths of Enugu extraction to strive hard to take over political leadership of the state, come 2023.

Ezeh gave the charge at the 3rd year anniversary of Coal City Youth Development Initiative, which was marked at Ascott Hotel, New Haven Enugu.

He was accompanied by the Prince of Nkerefi, Hon Onuoha, the President-General of Mburubu Town Union, Hon Emmanuel Edeh as well as the publisher of Jungle Journalist Media Limited, ThankGod Ofoelue.

Addressing the Assembly of young men and women, the Prince of Mburubu, as he is fondly called decried the tendency of the youths to allow themselves be easily bought over by politicians during elections.

He also asked them to stop selling their conscience for money and then turning around to complain that they have been shortchanged when denied political relevance in leadership.

Responding, the chairman of of the group, Hon Arinze Chilo-Ofiah thanked the engineer for his advice and promised that the youths would strive to act on his advice.

Highpoint of the event was the donation of a Toyota Hummer bus to the organisation by Eng Ezeh.

Handing over the keys to the Chilo-Ofiah and the founder, Mr John Paul Anih, Ezeh stated that he gave the bus because the youth group had solicited for one, and no one had shown any sign to assist.

He charged them to make good use of the utility bus for the benefit of Enugu Youths and people.

PHOTOS:

Hon Nnajiofor hails Gov Ugwuanyi’s rural development efforts, repositioning CSDP

The Member representing Nkanu East State Constituency at the Enugu State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Paul Nnajiofor has commended Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for payment of counterpart funds for the implementation of World Bank/Community and Social Development Projects in the State.

Nnajiofor gave the commendation against the backdrop of the extension of closing date of CSDP-AF project from September 30 to December 30, 2020.

He disclosed that the Ugwuanyi-led administration has injected over N 2 billion as the state counterpart funding for the World Bank / CSDP projects leading to the completion of over 350 micro-projects across the 17 local government areas.

On the current recruitment in the agency, Nnajiofor, who is also the Chairman, House Committee on Rural Development and CSDP hailed the transparency and openness in the recruitment process.

Nnajiofor also commended the World Bank for approving the extension of the CSDP Programme to allow more opportunities and participation for deserving communities.

Edo Indigenous Movement gets working Committee Chairman for  Global Festival

As part of preparations for the Edo indigenous home coming global festival, a Working Committee Chairman has been appointed. He is Mr. Ben Owens Ifionayi, who is from Edo South Senatorial District of Edo State.

This was revealed to newsmen in Benin City by the Edo Indigenous Leader and President of Edo Progressive Indigenous Association (EPIA), also known as Edo Indigenous Movement (EIM) Worldwide, Chief Dr. Bishop Omogiade Enoyiogiere Edokpolo.

According to Edokpolo, “the responsibilities of the Chairman working committee include helping EPIA/EIM to plan and organize or put the right modalities in place for the Edo indigenous home coming global festival bid for January, 2020”.

The EPIA leader urged Ifionayi to comply with EPIA/EIM guidelines and directives in carrying out all his duties in this regard.

According to EPIA boss, Mr. Ifionayi will be assisted by Engr. Tomi Ayannuga, and the Women Festival Committee Director, Mrs Comfort Osifo and the Women Chairperson, Mrs. Edith Westergard.

Responding, Mr. Ben Owens Ifionayi said he wholeheartedly accepted the offer to be the Chairman of Edo Indigenous Global Festival working committee charged with the responsibility of putting in place an action plan towards hosting a very successful festival that is scheduled to hold on January, 2022 in the glorious city of Benin.

“My name is Ben Owens Efionayi, CEO of Benowens Investment Nigeria Limited in Benin, CEO Bambie Multimedia Nigeria Limited in Benin & Abuja and also a Director and Board member, Triple E Estate Management Nigeria Limited. I also function as a legal forensic analyst in the Justice Department in Geneva, Switzerland. I am very honoured and proud to be part of this project going forward. It’s been long over due.

“I would also like to express my profound and deep appreciation to our President for his insightful, courageous and visionary work with the EPIA movement ably supported by very smart and positive minded people as members of the executive team. May God grant him more wisdom to pilot the affairs of the movement”, said Mr. Ifionayi.

Ogui Nike Youth Council reject Enugu govt committee on Ugwuaji land crisis

Ogui Youth Council, in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State have rejected the six man panel set by the State Government to investigate the Ugwuaji land dispute as the land in question is a subject of litigation in court between Ogui Nike Community and Awkunanaw communities.

The youth body instead called on the Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to use his good offices to effect the immediate cessation of trespass and intrusion into Ogui Nike land by the Ministry of Housing, Awkunanaw Communities and illegitimate entrants.

In a letter to the Governor, titled, RE: AGUOWO OGUI NIKE COMMUNITY LAND: HISTORY, FACT AND A CALL FOR GOVERNMENT RESOLUTION AND JUSTICE, signed by it’s Chairman Oluchukwu Fidelis, the youths faulted the setting up of a committee to only investigate issues of contention among Ugwuaji communities even where the said land in question do not belong to Awkunanaw.

They requested for the immediate implementation of the boundary decision between Ogui and Awkunanaw communities as established by a 1942 Inter-tribal Boundaries’ Settlement Ordinance No. 49 of 1933, which was further affirmed by the former Deputy Governor, who was the then Chairman, Enugu State boundry Committee , Ezenwata Okechukwu Itanyi, the then Surveyor General of Enugu, C C Isife and others.

The youths who claimed that various key institutions and offices of the State are in the custody of some of the facts, evidences and credible documents regarding the Ogui Nike land boundry with Awkunanaw communities said, government should be proactive in order to forestall a possible breakdown of law and order which could be born in the course of the land dispute adding that it is now like a gathering storm which may snowball into a hurricane of sort if good measures are not taken.

According to them, some of the facts annexed in there letter to the governor as it relates to the land predate Nigeria independence which were recognized by the previous successive governments of Eastern region, East Central state, old Anambra, old and the present Enugu States of Nigeria.

They include, “The 1942 enquiry into a land dispute between Ogui Nike and Awkunanaw which was headed by Geoffrey Horne, A.D.O under the inter-tribal boundaries’ settlement ordinance No. 49 of 1933 to decide boundary between Awkunanaw and the Nike Clan in the then Agbani District of Udi Division of the Onitsha province.

“Through this Ordinance, the boundaries of Ogui Nike/Awkunanaw as well as Nike/Ngwo were determined and it established that the Aguowo land which includes the dispute area has been in exclusive possession and farmed by Ogui Nike without any challenge whatsoever.

“Also in 2002 following the acquisition of Independence Layout phase 11, Enugu State Government had set up a committee headed by the then Deputy Governor of Enugu State; Ezenwata Okechukwu Itanyi.

“The Committee after deliberations resolved the problem of boundry between Ogui and Awkunanaw communities by adopting a three-pronged approach viz; reconnaissance, field operation, GIS mapping and coordination as well as invoked the decision of the national boundary commission that adopted boundary for Enugu North and Enugu South, which by extension served as the boundary for the two communities.

The Youth council noted that, both Ogui Nike, Amaechi and Ugwuaji communities were both represented by professional surveyors as witnesses in addition to State Government Surveyor General and Zonal surveyor. The following surveyors were nominated by the communities,
L.C Eneje- Ugwuaji
R.C Chukwu-Amaechi
N.J Igwebike- Ogui Nike.

They further stated that following a request by Ogui Nike, Awkunanaw communities the government of Enugu State after careful assessment and evaluation confirmed that 33% of the land used for the development of the independence layout phase II housing estate project, was originally owned by
Ogui Nike, while 66% fell in the land originally owned by Awkunanaw (Amaechi and Ugwuaji). Consequently, both Awkunanaw and Ogui Nike received compensatory plots which were ceded back to them by government in 2005.

The youth council also attached a letter from Bar E.E Egbo, a native of Ugwuaji and Company dated 23 May 2012 which equally confirms and recognises the indisputable fact that 33% of the land used for the Independence Layout, Phase ll belongs to Ogui Nike wherein he pleaded to the Enugu State Government to recognise Ugwuaji as beneficiaries to the compensation due to the Awkunanaw communities.

Also included in the letter is a court case filed in 2005 by Ugwuaji Community of Awkunanaw seeking the nullification of the government final decision in respect of the report of the boundary between Ugwuaji Community of Awkunanaw and Ogui Nike.

“After series of court appearances for about fourteen years from 2005 to 2019 without credible evidence or fact, Ugwuaji Community of Awkunanaw on 5th June 2019 pleaded with the Court to discontinue the matter thereby accepting previous decisions of the colonial administration (1942) and government of Enugu State on the land. The plea for discontinuance was granted on 28th January 2020 by Hon Justice A.O Anidi.

“While recognising the report of the boundary dispute between Obeagu Ugwuaji Awkunanaw and Ugwuaji Awkunanaw communities all in Enugu South Local Government, (ESLN No 16); and the Technical Report of the Enugu State boundary dispute between Ogui Nike Community and Awkunanaw communities comprising (Amaechi and Ugwuaji) part 1 and II (ESLN No 17 and 18), the Enugu State Gazette published on 24, December 2015, Government therefore affirmed and confirmed that the boundary between Ogui Nike Community and Awkunanaw communities remain consistent with 1942, 2002 and 2005 decisions by the successive colonial and democratic government at the times in question.

The youth council while expressing dismay that Ogui Nike Community have been visited with outright violence, torture and intimidation, added that there’s been consistent trespass in their land with impunity which has consequently resulted in the disruption of viable and legitimate economic activities in the Area.

Part of the letter reads: “Over the past few years, there has been consistent trespass into the Ogui Nike Community land by members of Ugwuaji Awkunanaw community including: disruptions of viable and legitimate economic activities of Ogui Nike community members, attempts to illegally usurp and manage properties in the said location, sales and allocation of land belonging to Ogui Nike by Ugwuaji Community, physical torture, intimidation, violation of rights of people of Ogui Nike Community and flagrant abuse of court orders and Executive instructions.

“As we are no longer suspecting that the act is being supported by state authorities which is evident in the presence of State Ministry of Housing in the dispute area,
we therefore call on government to leave our only remaining land and do a wholistic inquiry into not just Ugwuaji land problems but to also determine and recommend effective implementation of existing boundry demercation between Enugu North and South local government areas which include the land in dispute between Ogui Nike and Awkunanaw communities as established by both Enugu state boundry committee and the National Boundry Commission”, they stated.

Enugu Governor Dissolves Devt Centres Administration, Hints on New Appointments

Following the expiration of the tenure of the Development Centre Administrators and Members in the 17 Local Government Areas of Enugu State, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has announced plans by his administration to reconstitute the membership of the Development Centres.

Gov. Ugwuanyi made the announcement during a meeting with the outgone Administrators, and the 17 Local Government Council Chairmen held at the Government House, Enugu, on Tuesday.

The governor who thanked the former Administrators for the services they rendered to their Development Centres, Local Government Areas and the State, disclosed that new Administrators and Members of the Development Centres will be appointed, after due consultation.

Threat To Life: Edo Farmer Petitions Police 

Favour Percy -Idubor, Benin

A farmer and businessman, Mr Ebose Ezeigbebe, has petition the Nigeria Police over threat to his life by Obenevburibo community in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area of Edo where his 2000 plots of palm farm and oil milling palm is located.

The petition dated August 11, 2020 and titled: “Threat of Violence, Threat to Life, Conduct Seeking to Breach Peace, Possession of Firearms” was addressed to the AIG Zone 5, Benin by lawyer to Ezeigbebe, Valentine Onochie & Co.

Ezeigbebe whose farm was recognised as the best Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (ACGSF) national farmer of the year 2011 under the Tree crops, said the threat was occasioned by his refusal to cede 50 plots of the land to the community.

He said the land which he purchased from the community in 1999, became a controversial one when the Obenevburibo community alleged that he (Ezeigbebe) has gone beyond the 2000 plots sold to him.

He explained that premised on this allegation, he and the community agreed to commission a surveyor to resurvey the land.

“My problem with the community began in 2018 when they approached me and asked that I give them 50 plots of land from what I bought from them, stating that what I had in my possesion was in excess of what they granted me.

“This was coming after 18 years of cultivating and milling oil palm; this was a surprise to me and I refused. They however insisted that I must hire a surveyor to re – survey the land.

“Not minding that the onus is on the community to hire a surveyor, I did in the interest of peace. It turned out that there were extra fractions amounting to three and half plots which i rounded up to four plots and gave the community in the interest of peace,” he said.

Ezeigbebe said instead of taking the four plots, the community refused because they had their sights set on 50 plots because two years passed wihout any word from the community and its elders.

Said he , “To my surprise, they invited me for a meeting on August 7, 2020, but the meeting was more or less like an ambush.

“The community demanded for 100 plots of land and requested that I either give them or they will take it violently and that it was out of pity that they have not already done so.

“They made it clear that they just killed somebody at the neighbouring community and so needed the plots of land to settle the matter with the neighbouring community.”

Ezeigbebe said he has been forced to shut down operations at the facility in order to avoid any unfortunate occurrence.

In their reaction howver, the community denied issuing any threat to the farmer, even as they agreed that an excess of three and half plots of land was discovered upon the survey carried out in 2018.

The Ohen (Second in Command) of the community, Pa Isaac Igiebor, however said the purported survey was carried out by Ezeigbebe.

According to him, “It is true that a meeting was held on August 7, 2020, though I was not in the meeting but the report I got was that there was no argument how much more threat”.

Igiebor also said some members of the community have been invited by the police in respect to the petition.

“We have been invited to appear by the police and we have already contacted our lawyers to that effect,” he stated.

Umuahia to have pipe borne water by end of September, Ikpeazu assures

Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu has expressed optimism that pipe borne water will begin to run in Umuahia urban city by the end of September this year.

The Governor stated this while inspecting new equipment procured by the state government for this purpose at the State Ministry of Public Utilities and Water Resources in readiness for the pumping of water in the urban and semi-urban cities of the State.

He assured of his administration’s support to the ministry of public utilities in realizing government’s dream of providing potable water to the people of the State.

The Governor called on engineers of the ministry to engage in capacity building that will ensure the new equipment are properly maintained directed his Chief of Staff, Dr. Anthony Agbazuere, to station men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in the premises of the ministry to protect the new installations.

Dr. Ikpeazu said he was also passionate about giving the rural populace clean water and urged the Commissioner for Public Utilities to intervene in that regard. He also charged the Commissioner to maintain the relationship with the funding agencies and assured that his government will continue to meet its counterpart funding obligations to continue to enjoy the expertise of the agencies.

Earlier, while displaying the equipment to the Governor, the Commissioner for Public Utilities and Water Resources, Engr. Emma Nwabuko, stated that the State Government with the collaboration of United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and World Bank are set to pump pipe borne water into the streets of Umuahia by the end of September.

The Commissioner noted the completion of four industrial wells which aid in pumping of water with a pump house, treatment plant, the installation of a 500KVA power generating set and two solar energy banks for 24 hours regular water supply.

He also disclosed that some buildings including commercial buildings and pump house amongst others have been rehabilitated.

Engr Nwabuko further said that the ministry will soon commence the pumping of raw water as a first step so as to identify leakages among the water pipes and work on them.

The Commissioner commended the Governor of Abia State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, for his tremendous support to the ministry promising that they will not let him down.

Also speaking, the General Manager of Abia State Water Board, Engineer Ogbonna Chiemela, noted the importance of getting it right from the onset, stating that the ministry has done a lot to prepare for the project so as to ensure its sustainability.