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Again, one dies, police officer wounded in A’Ibom cult clash

From INI FRIDAY, Uyo

In what seems like a recurring decimal, one person has died and a retired police inspector has been wounded in a renewed cult clash between Debam and Iceland confraternities in Inen Community, Oruk Anam Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State.

It was gathered that the victim, “Udo Mma” died on the spot while the retired police officer was seriously wounded in the compound when the cultists attacked last Saturday.

AbeyaNews gathered that the inspector retired from service in Port Harcourt but was bedridden with a stroke and had to relocate to his village at Inen Ikot Ndoh, where he was seriously wounded in his compound during the attack.

It was learnt that the cultists were not comfortable with the manner in which the retired police Inspector was persuading them to allow peace prevail but chose to continue in reprisal killings in the area.

An eyewitness, Mr Udo Jim said the police officer known as Inspector Okon Josiah was worried by the rate of insecurity and wanton killings occasioned by cult clashes in his village, explaining that Inspector Josiah, accordingly, decided to penetrate the rival cult groups by begging them to stop further hostilities in the community.

Jim further told AbeyaNews that other persons injured by the hoodlums in the attack in the same village were receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital.

He said: “Inspector Okon begged the cultists for three weeks to stop killings and all forms of terrorism as he could never run away from his village, especially considering his health condition.

“But instead of the cultists hearkening to his pleas, they decided to maim him last weekend after they had killed one person.

“When the hoodlums arrived at the policeman’s compound, family members ran away but the victim could not escape because he has stroke. So they gave him several matchet blows.”

Another eyewitness who preferred to remain unnamed stated that the cultists moved on a motorcycle convoy to the next village, chanting war songs, inflicting injury on many people while others who escaped into the bush, returned the following morning to pack their belongings to take refuge elsewhere.

“Many people did not sleep in their houses last night for fear of the cultists. The village has been deserted by all. Who knows what they would do as many have run away. They may even burnt down the entire village.

“Today being Sunday, no Church has conducted worship service in this community because of this incident and other ones that happened in the past.”

Speaking to our correspondent in a telephone interview, the Police Public Relations Officer, SP Odiko Macdon confirmed the incident saying three persons have been arrested.

Macdon said the Commissioner of Police, Andrew Amiengheme has ordered an urgent investigation to unravel the cause of cult clashes in the area.

He assured that all the suspects arrested would be charged to court to face the wrath of the law.

He said: “Right now operations have commenced in the area to comb for those behind these killings. Operations have intensified more than before to end killings there.

“The Commissioner of Police intends to engage stakeholders in this exercise for credible result as the command is very angry that people have turned to hunting spree for human lives.”

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