By Chukwuemeka Opara
Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi welcomed the arrest of the leader of a kidnapper gang who kidnapped some residents of the Enyigba community in the state.
The Nigerian News Agency (NAN) reports that the residents were recently abducted as part of the new land dispute between the community and the neighboring community of Enyibichiri.
The governor made his feelings known in a statement by Information and Guidance Commissioner Uchenna Orji on Thursday.
Orji said some gang members were also arrested alongside their leader and are now in custody.
“The state government has sent security agents to the state border with Cameroon, where other gang members are believed to be hiding.
“The government will do whatever is in the law to prosecute suspects, to verify the status of those abducted,” he said.
Orji quoted the governor congratulating residents of the councils of Abakaliki and Ikwo, where the two communities are located, on their maturity in the face of the kidnapping and urged them to maintain it.
“The governor warns the disbelievers, especially the Izzi extraction that covers Abakaliki, to refrain from attacking the people of Ikwo both in the state and in other places.
“Any further attack on the Ikwo people will be considered an act of terrorism and the perpetrators will be dealt with decisively.
“The Izzi and the Ikwo are brothers and should be commended for having collectively waged a war against criminals who want to destroy their cultural heritage,” said the commissioner.
Orji reiterated the governor’s directive that the bonds granted to stakeholders in the Effium and Ezza-Effium communities of the Ohaukwu local government area be revoked.
“The Police Commissioner has been tasked with enforcing the directive as government efforts to stop the killings in the community are undermined.
“The government will explore all avenues to ensure lasting peace for the affected community, regardless of insults from people on both sides of the conflict.
“The Effium and Ezza-Effium peoples are one and the government is ignoring the suggestion to separate them after living together for centuries,” he said. (NAA)