Egbeda Ronflict Resolution and Project Committee has petitioned the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, the Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani and Emohua Local Government Chairman, Hon. Tom Aliezi over the wanton destruction of lives and property in the area.
The letter, dated August 30, 2018 and addressed to the above named political office holders, called for urgent attention to the simmering crisis in the community.
The letter also, among other things, demanded audience with the committee’s executive to find lasting solution to the cult supremacy battle in the community, which had claimed many lives in the area, and caused the destruction of properties worth millions of Naira.
The petition, which was signed by the Committees’ President, Comrade Chibuzor Ogbuji catalogued the plethora of woes which the community had suffered in recent times in the wake of renewed cult violence.
In a related development, thousands of Egbeda people have fled their homes following the upsurge of cult violence in the area.
A spokesman for the community and the Chairman of Egbeda Conflicts Resolution and Project Committee, Comrade Chibuzor Ogbuji criticized the Emohua Local Government Council for blatant complacency in the summering cult crisis in the community.
According to him, “When the chairman was contacted, he told the committee that he was not the chairman of Egbeda but Emohua Local Council”.
Ogbuji expressed regret that instead of Aliezi championing the restoration of peace in Egbeda, he elected to trade blames.
Responding to a question from The Tide, yesterday, the Emohua Local government Chairman, Hon. Tom Aliezi said the community was not ready for peace.
Aliezi noted that there was nothing the council could do in the circumstances.
The council chairman, who spoke in a phone chat, expressed hopelessness in the handling of the Egbeda crisis.
The group has not received any response yet from the authorities.
Meanwhile, the police in Rivers State say they have began a manhunt for suspected cultists who shot and killed leader of a rival group in Egbeda and Ubimini communities in Emuoha Local Government Area of the state.
Spokesman of the Rivers State Police Command, DSP Nnamdi Omoni disclosed this to The Tide in Port Harcourt, yesterday.
It would be recalled that the notorious cult leader identified as Mathias was killed, last weekend.
Omoni, while confirming the incident in a telephone interview, said investigations into the cause of the killing and those behind the incident have intensified.
“Yes, we (the police) are aware of the incident. Right now, we are still investigating the killing, and our men are combing the area; although no arrest has been made yet.
“We advise youths to steer clear of cultism and related vices capable of endangering their future,” the police image maker said.
Our reporter learnt that Mathias, believed to be the leader of Iceland cult group, was shot dead by a rival cult gang in the area in a battle of supremacy.
The slain dreaded cultist, who was an indigene of Ubimini, was killed when he went to assist his gang members in Egbeda to fight a rival cult group.
His death, according to a community source, has led many natives and non-indigenes to flee for fear of a reprisal attack.
The source, who gave his name as Nelson (surname withheld), said the community received news about the cult leader’s death with mixed feelings.
The Egbeda Community Development Committee Chairman, Ukwoha Omereji, corroborated the views of the police image maker that security personnel have been deployed to the community.
Omereji, therefore, called on residents of Egbeda community, who fled the area to return.
Chidi Enyie, John Bibor & Dennis Naku