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Obiano imposes curfew on warring Anambra communities

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Governor Willie Obiano has imposed a three-day curfew on Aguleri, Umueri, and Umuoba Anam towns, all in Anambra East Council of the state, following a communal crisis at the weekend.

He said the restriction lasts from 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. daily, beginning from Saturday, January 16, 2021.

In a statement yesterday, the governor threatened violators with the prosecution, adding that the move was to hastily restore order in the affected three communities.

The settlements were lock-horned in a protracted land dispute.

Both Aguleri and Umuleri villages, said to be related, had engaged in a fierce war between 1999 and 2001, during which former President Olusegun Obasanjo mediated to no avail.

The recent clash, which began Friday, resulted in the destruction of one house, four vehicles, and two motorcycles.

The timely intervention of security operatives, including police and army personnel on Saturday, saved the situation.

The state police command, in a statement by its public relations officer (PRO), CSP Haruna Mohammed, said normalcy had been restored, while investigation had begun to unravel the circumstances leading to the incident.

The statement read: “On January 16, 2021, at about 7:15 a.m., there was a report of crisis between Umueri and Aguleri communities, both in Anambra East LGA of Anambra State over a disputed area of land, which both communities were laying claim of ownership.

“Following the distress, the command quickly dispatched joint police teams comprising PMF/RRS and other conventional units in collaboration with other security agencies, led by the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations, Salman Dogo, to the scene.

“Situation was brought under control, while the joint patrol is still ongoing to restore normalcy in the affected areas.”

He said CP John Abang had directed the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Awka to carry out a discreet probe to unravel the immediate and remote causes of the skirmish, as well as bring the perpetrators to book.

Although the force reported that no life was lost and nobody sustained injuries during the clash, reports, however, said an unidentified man was killed, while six others sustained injuries.

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