Category Archives: Community Reports

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.

COVID-19: Abia launches community sensitization program

Following the successful launch of its community testing initiative for coronavirus few weeks ago, the Abia State Government on Wednesday inaugurated a Covid-19 community sensitization team for its 17 Local Government Areas.

Chairman of Abia inter-ministerial committee on COVID-19 and Secretary to the State Government, Barr. Chris Ezem, who represented Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, called on all those residing in the state to take their destinies in their hands and see themselves as Ambassadors in the fight against Covid-19 in their various communities.

Ezem cautioned against tolerance of people who flout the protocol without necessary corrections from their fellow citizens, stressing that every member of a community must now help to instruct all those flouting protocols to desist from doing so.

“The message should immediately start from our homes. We must start preaching it from our homes, markets, churches and all gatherings. We can’t watch other people not observe the protocols and infect others in the process. Every buyer and seller must avoid falling victim of this protocols.

Addressing newsmen at Aba Town Hall, in Aba South LGA, venue of the inauguration and flag off, The Commissioner for Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu, said that the new move is another milestone in government’s sensitization efforts against Covid-19.

He said that government was fully aware that the fight against the deadly virus was not over yet, therefore needed to do more by taking sensitization to the communities where the people need constant information and updating of such information to stay safe.

“What we have done today is to launch community sensitization team for every local government. As it’s happening here, it’s also happening in 16 other LGAs of the State.

“What we expect from this team inaugurated today is to be driving round every community in Abia State with vehicles mounted with public address system, talking to people and passing relevant information in the manner and language the people at the grassroots understand perfectly”, he said

The Commissioner also said that the team will apply and utilize every local system of communication necessary and peculiar to certain areas, to ensure that no stone is left unturned in the effort to ensure information about Covid-19 gets to the people.

“All the town criers and every information management structure that exists in our communities will now have to be deployed to sensitize our people on the prevention and control of COVID-19.

“It’s part of our ongoing efforts to break the chain of transmission in the state. We’ve already launched community testing which is ongoing. Abia is the first state in the Southeast region to roll out Community Testing,” he informed.

In that light, Okiyi Kalu gave strict warning to transporters and passengers, stressing that the state police command has been mandated to arrest and ensure the arraignment of all those who flout Covid-19 protocols like wearing of face masks and number of passengers in each commercial vehicle.

“Henceforth, any tricycle carrying more than two passengers and whose occupants are not putting on face masks is in breach of Covid-19 protocols and would be arrested.

“Any passenger who joins a tricycle that already has two passengers is in breach of the same protocol and will also be arrested. While we recognize that carrying two passengers as against the usual four will naturally lead to price adjustment, it’s unconscionable for anyone to flout the rule alongside another culprit and still turn around to complain against them Those who voluntarily flaunt the regulations on 2 passengers and compulsory face mask should not come and complain about tri cyclists who fleece them or rogue security agents who take advantage of them.

“We believe that this challenge can easily be solved if our people take the fight against Covid-19 serious. Nobody should buy or sell to anybody who’s not putting on face mask. It’s important that at our individual levels, we take responsibility and do the needful.

“We’ve empowered the state police command to use a more extensive system that’s by far greater than what we had in the past to ensure compliance. A lot of those breaking the rules will soon become very uncomfortable,” the Commissioner concluded.

Man hangs self after failed attempt to strangle sister to death

A father-of-three allegedly committed suicide in an uncompleted building in Umudiaka, Nsukka Local Government Area, Enugu State.

Mr Emmanuel Eze is said to have taken his life on Sunday night, August 2, hours after a domestic fracas with his immediate family over a yet-to-be-identified matter.

The deceased, from Eha-Alumona, also in the same local government but who resides with his family at Umudiaka, allegedly tried to strangle his sister during the fracas the occured on Sunday morning.

According to Vanguard, residents said the late Eze would have strangled his younger sister if not for the intervention of neighbours who rushed to his house when his wife, identified as Mary, raised an alarm while he attacked his younger sister.

“He strangled his younger sister to the point that blood was coming out from her ears and nostrils. He equally kept a pestle by the side. However, given the intervention of the neighbourhood who rushed to the scene, the girl was rescued. She is now hospitalized at the Divine Mercy Hospital in Nsukka Metropolis,”
the source said.

Hours later, Eze was found hanging from an uncompleted building.

Sources suspect Eze may have considered taking his own life for the fear that his younger sister might die from the injuries she sustained when he attacked her.

Residents who identified the deceased said he collects rate for the local government at a livestock market, in Ikpa.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson of the Enugu State Police Command, Daniel Ndukwe, who confirmed the incident to the publication, said the officers of Nsukka Urban Division have moved to the scene and are currently handling the situation.

He added that thorough investigations have commenced to unravel the circumstances that could have led to the act.

Cultists unleash mayhem, kill 5 in Cross River

Suspected cultists numbering over 50, armed with axes, shotguns and machetes have destroyed properties worth ten million naira after killing five persons in Akpabuyo LGA of Cross River State. The incident happened on Sunday in the Forestry area of the council.

Nocturnal groups whose identities were given as Skylo and Scorpion operating in the area are reported to be responsible for the mayhem. A witness said both groups reportedly exchanged gunfire at the forestry checkpoint in Akpabuyo.

Presently, the area remains deserted as petty businesses have since closed shops as a result of the development. It was alleged that members of the Scorpion gang ignited the friction that led to the face-off with Skylo group.

“Five persons were reportedly gunned down during the clash while properties worth ten million naira were destroyed. Both groups are suspected to have butchered five of their members”, the witness said. He said it was also suspected that remnants of the dreaded Bakassi Strike Force have stepped into the face-off after directing both groups to a ceasefire without success.

“After the ultimatum given by the former militants expired, some armed men suspected to be militants invaded the area with a view to clearing the suspected cult groups and clean the local government area of cultists”, the witness further said.

The Security Adviser to Governor Ben Ayade (South), Ani Esin said “We have some cult-related clashes in Akpabuyo Local Government Area of the State which degenerated into communal differences and we are trying to see what we can do to curtail it. We will handle the cult issue first, and then go into communal differences”.

The Permanent Secretary, Governor’s Office, in charge of Security, Dr Alfred Mboto also lamented the situation saying “Yesterday, when I got distress calls, I immediately called the Commissioner of Police and the Brigade Commander. They sent security personnel to the area to maintain law and order.”

Husband, wife, die in fresh bomb blast in Borno village

A husband and his wife, (names withheld) were killed in a suicide attack which rocked Kafan Ruwa village in Konduga Local Government Area of troubled Borno State.

Sources also said an unspecified number of residents in the Borno Village were injured in the attack with the destruction of houses.

Kafan Ruwa, a.k.a waterways in English is predominantly a fishermen communities dominated by Hausa origins and a stone throw to Konduga Local Government Headquarters which is about 40km drive from Maiduguri, the state capital.

Reliable sources said
that the incident took place on Sunday at about 12:30 am when the suicide bomber infiltrated a household in the Borno village and detonated an Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) strapped to her body.

When contacted, the Deputy Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Yakubu Mohammed confirmed the attack but insisted that he did not have details on the number of casualties.

His words: “Yes I have been trying to get in touch with the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Konduga, but am yet to get him, whenever I get him, I will furnish you with the details.” He told Vanguard.