By Peter Okutu
No fewer than 100 women from in Ikwo local government area of Ebonyi State yesterday protested over arrest of their sons and burning of houses in Agubia community .
The elderly women protested in front of the Government House, Abakaliki.
Recall that there was a serious crisis in Agubia community which resulted in the killing of one Chinedu Nwali and destruction of lives and property worth millions of Naria
The crisis was a result of leadership tussle between youths in Agubia community over who takes control of the Agubia motor park.
Houses were also burnt and over five persons were seriously injured during the crisis and they are currently receiving treatment at the Abakaliki Federal teaching hospital, FETHA.
The Agubia Motor Park is the central park where all the vehicles leaving and entering the community stop.
Also, homes and vehicles belonging to some of the current leaders of the parks were vandalized and set ablaze by the opposing youths.
Vanguard gathered that security agencies swung into action by arresting some suspected persons believed to have hand in the said communal crisis.
Speaking to journalists, the leader of the protesters, Mrs Beatrice Nwali said “they came with security agents and arrested our sons who came for a wedding three days ago.
“They arrested about nine of them and dumped them in the police cell. They also arrested another son of ours who is a barrister in his house. They claimed that they are involved in Agubia motor park crisis.
“They came again with SARS and arrested other people at night. They arrested our sons because they claimed that they are the owners of the community.
“They have not settled the crisis in Agubia motor park and that’s why our sons who came for a wedding were arrested,” she stated.
Another protester who also spoke, Mrs Mercy Nwali said “the problem is too much on us and that’s why we came to protest. We are running away as a result of war. We didn’t go to our houses because of the crisis.
“We ran away and left all our properties and left our breasts like this. We came so that the government will come to our rescue. We ask the governor to come to our rescue. Let our children return, so that we can settle the matter for them.
“We are for peace and the nine persons arrested should be released,” she stressed.
However, there was a mild drama during the protest as the protesters refused to enter a bus provided by the state government to take them home and money given to them was as well rejected.
The women insisted that they preferred to trek back to their refuge home since their houses were completely burnt down.
Responding, the commissioner for Internal Security, Border Peace and Conflict Resolution, Mr Stanley Okoro Emeghia asked the protesters to go home, assuring them of government readiness to ensure quick release of the said arrested persons.
“We will make sure that the peace you are seeking is realized. I assure you that before the end of work today, the governor will respond to your need and cries,” he stated.