The self-determination feud between Ogwashi-Uku Kingdom and Otulu-Ugo community, both in Aniocha South Local Government Area, Delta State, has continued to linger as the leadership of Otulu-Ugo raised the alarm that some hoodlums are being trained to be unleashed on them in the name of vigilante group.
Besides, they called on Delta State Government to recognize and give staff of office to their appointed traditional ruler for a lasting peace in the community
Addressing newsmen in Otulu, the community, Obi Francis Medolunwa, revealed that policemen were illegally enlisted to train the group and called on the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and the Department of State Security (DSS) and other security agencies to step in and save the law-abiding people of Otulu-Ugo.
They said that the community had a fledging vigilance group that had ensured security of lives and property of the people and any attempt to bring an external group as vigilante will be resisted.
According to him, the community had an existing vigilante, known to everyone, and if the police want to train additional group, they should reach out to community leaders for individuals to be trained and commissioned to work with them, adding that they will not welcome foreigners as vigilantes in their land.
Obi Medolunwa recalled that the community had suffered oppression from its neighbours in the quest to assert their autonomy on the land inherited from their ancestors, stressing that neighbouring communities were laying claims to their land thereby making them to institute a court case.
He explained that anybody interested in the community, either the state government, communities or individuals should wait for the ruling of the court in suit no. 01/38/2021, pending before a High Court in Asaba, than harassing innocent indigenes and residents.
On lasting peace in the area, Obi Medolunwa called on Delta State Government to recognize the town and the traditional ruler appointed by the people by giving him staff of office, stressing that such move will calm tension, avoid communal clash and restore normalcy.
While reiterating his call on the state government and security agencies to come to their aid, he recalled that since the unwholesome incident of September 2021, whereby one of their able-bodied young men, Mr. Cletus Okpala, was shot and killed, policemen, on the instance of Ogwashi-Uku community, had been arresting and charging indigenes of Otulu-Ugo community for an offence they knew the accused persons.
According to him, they had written petitions and police knew those responsible for the murder of Cletus, whose corpse is still in the mortuary, but they (police) still charge innocent persons, while the suspected murderers from Ogwashi-Uku were walking freely in the streets without being prosecuted.
He revealed that Force CID had concluded its investigations but powerful individuals in Ogwashi-Uku kingdom, led by a former minister, were influencing the Commissioner of Police, Legal Department Abuja and frustrating efforts to charge the case to court, adding that unless the accused persons were charged, justice will not be served.