Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, has announced the imposition of curfew on Aguleri, Umueri and Umuoba Anam towns, all in Anambra East Local Government Area of Anambra State.
The measure put in place some hours after crisis erupted between two neighbouring communities of Umueri and Aguleri is to stem the outbreak of communal violence reported in the three towns.
A statement by the Governor said the curfew which begins on Saturday, January 16, 2021 will last from 7pm to 7am daily.
“The curfew in the first instance will last for three days. Violators of the curfew would be prosecuted,” Obiano added.
He took the action hours after one building, four vehicles and two motorcycles were on Saturday set ablaze following a renewed clash between neighbouring communities of Umueri and Aguleri.
The age-long communal clash between Governor Willie Obiano’s country home (Aguleri) and Umueri was said to have been re-ignited over a piece of land both communities are laying claim to.
A source who spoke on condition of anonymity said the crisis started when
Umueri Youths pulled down the fence of a member representing the zone at the lower chamber of the national Assembly, Hon Chinedu Obidigwe.
The source however said Obidigwe has denied carrying out any fencing work around or near the place in question.
Confirming the incident, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Haruna Mohammed said that the situation has been brought under control and investigation commenced to ascertain circumstances surrounding the incident.
He added: “On 16/1/2021 at about 7:15am 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 call, 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, DCP Salman Dogo, to the scene. Situation was brought under control, while joint patrol is still ongoing to restore normalcy in the affected areas.
“Meanwhile, no loss of lives and injuries has been reported. However, one building, four vehicles and two motorcycles were set ablaze by the warring factions.
“Consequently, the Commissioner of Police CP John B. Abang, has directed the State CID Awka to carry out discreet investigation in order to ascertain circumstances surrounding the incident and bring perpetrators to book.
“The CP also warned both parties to maintain peace and explore all the legal avenues to resolve their grievances without resorting to violence. He further assured both parties that he would contact the State Government to intervene in the matter in order to find lasting solution to the lingering problem.”