By Emmanuel Aziken
ABUJAâ€”Senator Julius Ucha (PDP, Ebonyi Central) and members of the House of Representatives from his senatorial district, Monday, dared the authorities in Ebonyi State to name the Abuja based politicians it claimed incited the recent spate of killings in the state.
At a briefing in Abuja, the legislators accused the state authorities of culpability in the violence, claiming that it was the â€œcase of the witch crying at night and the child dying in the morning.â€
Senator Ucha who addressed newsmen on behalf of Reps. Igwe Nwagu (PDP, Ezza North/Isheilu) and Chima Ugo (PDP, Ikwo/Ezza South) was flanked by the President General of the Ebonyi Community in Abuja, Mr. Ben Bright-Mkpuma.
They spoke against the background of the reported 21 month conflict in the state which the legislators claimed yesterday had led to the blocking of the Enugu/Abakiliki highway and resultant killing of innocent persons.
They particularly found fault with the claim by Mr. Egwu Chima, the Ebonyi State Commissioner of Information that Abuja based politicians were the ones stoking the violence.
â€œWe also wish to express our shock and disbelief on the recent media reports, which claimed that Abuja based politicians of Ebonyi extraction are responsible for the renewed hostilities,â€ Senator Ucha who read the prepared speech on behalf of the legislators said.
â€œWhile it is not in our character to answer to frivolous and unsubstantiated accusations, we as elected representatives of our people cannot ignore mischievous claims by misguided elements.â€
â€œWe are amazed that in spite of various efforts made by us and the government to end this unwarranted and protracted conflict, some misguided elements are now politicising the crisis by pointing accusing fingers to entire elected representatives of the state, in National Assembly. We view this as grave accusation that needs to be substantiated by those who made the allegation.â€
Challenging the state authority to name the Abuja politicians who allegedly instigated the crisis, Senator Ucha said:
â€œThat the state government should as a matter of honour take the next step of immediately disclosing such Abuja Politicians as alleged, with a view to handing them over to the security agencies for appropriate action.â€
â€œThat we condemn the on-going conflict in its entirety. All Our political trajectory has been peaceful, devoid of violence. We cannot change now, as the saying in our area goes that it is risky for one to learn new dancing steps at old age.â€
The lawmakers further affirmed that the crisis was not in any way linked to the 2011 elections as alleged by the State Commissioner of Information, Mr. Chima Egwu.
â€œLinking the re-newed hostilities in the area to the 2011 general elections is the high point of insensitivity, unfortunately coming from people who are presumably well informed. We cannot and should NOT be chasing rats while our common house is caught in inferno.â€