By Jimitota Onoyume
VIOLENCE continued in B Dere and K Dere communities in Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State after an appeal from the state government to all warring parties to cease hostilities. Community sources told the Vanguard, that about six persons were feared dead and several houses torched when youths from one of the communities mobilised and attacked the other on a retaliatory mission, Monday night.
At press time, Vanguard, gathered that residents of the communities had started fleeing the area for fear of their lives.
When contacted for comment, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Mrs Rita Inoma-Abbey, said she was yet to get details on the latest development but she was aware of skirmishes in the area.
It will be recalled that about a week ago, crisis broke out in the area which allegedly resulted in the loss of lives and destruction of property. Community sources alleged scores of persons had died in the crisis so far. But no government organ, including security quarters had spoken on the death of any.
In the meantime, the Rivers State government has set up a commission of inquiry into the development and also urged parties to sheath their swords.
A statement from the acting Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Blessing Wekina said , “the Rivers State government has called on the warring factions in the B-Dere and K-Dere communal crises to cease all further hostilities as it has inaugurated a judicial commission of Inquiry into the matter.
“Government wishes to state that a judicial commission of inquiry has been constituted and inaugurated to look into the immediate and remote causes of the violent conflict and proffer lasting solution.”
“The state government has, therefore, called on the people of both communities to give peace a chance as the commission had been given sweeping powers to deal with the situation,” he said.
The government also warned that it will no longer tolerate any breakdown of law and order in the area.