Gov. Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom has called on warring communities in Oku Iboku clan in Itu Local Government Area and Ikot Offiong in Cross River to sheath their swords and embrace peace.
Emmanuel made the call on Sunday when he led members of the state Security Council to visit Ikot Ada Akpan community allegedly displaced by suspected gunmen from Ikot Offiong in Cross River State, following a communal clash.
The governor, while addressing the displaced communities in Oku Iboku clan in Itu local government area, said that they were attacked by their neighbouring communities in Ikot Offiong,
He assured them that his administration was taking necessary measures to ensure their security and safety.
He appealed to them to remain law abiding as his administration would do everything possible to forestall a reoccurrence of the wanton destruction of lives and property.
The governor appealed to the community leaders and youths in the area to maintain peace even in the face of provocation by their Ikot Offiong neighbours.
He promised to provide relief materials to communities affected by the violent attacks in order to ameliorate their suffering.
Responding, the transition Chairman of Itu local government area, Mrs Elsie Esara said that the people of Oku Iboku had incurred severe losses as a result of renewed communal clash and attack by unidentified gunmen from Ikot Offiong.
She appealed to the state government to come to the aid of the community by way of providing relief materials to the affected persons.
Speaking also, a community leader in the area, Mr Ekpe Antia, said that the people of Oku Iboku have in recent times been harassed and attacked from Ikot Offiong.
He hinted that the community would no longer fold its hands and watch its youth and women being killed by gunmen from Cross River state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that renewed communal clashes between Ikot Offiong community in Cross River and its Oku Iboku neighbours in Akwa Ibom state have claimed scores of lives and property worth millions of naira.
Gov. Emmanuel was accompanied by the Police Commissioner Donald Awuna, Commander 2 Brigade Command Nigerian Army, Brigadier General Abdulahi Hassan, member representing Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal constituency in the House of Representatives and other security personnel. (NAN)