The commissioner of police in Ebonyi state Mr. Titus Lamorde yesterday arrested the deputy chief of staff to governor David Umahi, Prof. Fidelis Okpata for allegedly aiding the communal clashes between Ekpomaka and Inyimagu communities.
The clash resulted to the killing of people and destruction of properties.
Others arrested are appointees of governor David Umahi and all top politicial stakeholders from Ikwo Local government area of the state.
It was gathered that Prof. Okpata was arrested and handcuffed at the exco-chambers government house Abakaliki during the enlarged security meeting with security chiefs and stakeholders from both Ikwo and Abakaliki local government areas.
Investigation, revealed that the arrest of the aide was ordered by the state governor Chief David Umahi who is visibly angry over the persistent killings and destruction of properties in both communities.
Umahi who was angry over the killings of citizens at the area ordered for the immediate arrest of all political appointees and stakeholders from the warring communities pending the amicable resolution of the crisis.
He expressed dismay that despite the decision of the state government to set up a committee to look into the crisis, the two communities had refused to give peace a chance to enable the state government look into the cause of fresh hostilities in the areas.
He said: “I am sad that there is still crisis in these communities despite the fact that we set up a committee in this state to look into the matter.
“We pleaded with the communities to ceasefire and await the outcome of
the committee report but it does appear that they do not want to give peace a chance. I therefore order the Commissioner of Police to arrest
all the stakeholders and political office holders from the communities.
“Without looking back, all of you in this Executive council chamber are under arrest. I want the Commissioner of Police to detain you people until peace returns to the communities.” He stressed.
He further warned that his administration will do everything possible to ensure safety of the people of the state and deal with anybody found fomenting troubles in the communities no matter how highly placed.
Fresh crisis broke out in Ekpomaka-Inyimagu and Izzi communities on the 25th of February and since then, over 10 lives and properties that worth millions of naira have been reportedly destroyed.
It was gathered that the development prompted the state government to set up a committee chaired by the first Vice President of the Ebonyi State Council of Traditional Rulers, Ezeogo Romanus Iyioku with Chief Felix Mgbada as secretary to look into the cause of the crisis.