Irate Youths Attack Council Boss


Mr. Okpo Ekere, Transition Committee Chairman of Mbo Local Government in Akwa Ibom, was attacked by irate youths in the area on Sunday.

Ekere was attacked by the youths from Ebughu community on his way to settle a communal dispute between Ebughu and Efiat communities in the local government area.

An eyewitness, who pleaded anonymity, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the youths fired gun shots at a close range at the chairman.

“He was given severe machete blows on the head after he was shot. I think they wanted to kill him because his police orderly pleaded with them but they refused to listen to his plea,” the eye witness said.

The eyewitness said the chairman was rushed to a nearby traditional healer at Edikor community who removed some bullets from his body before he was taken to the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital.

NAN gathered that the people of Efiat allegedly killed and buried a young boy from Ebughu community.

The killing led to Ebughu youths launching a reprisal attack on anybody passing through the area, and the chairman who was on his way to settle the dispute was caught in the crisis.

Akwa Ibom Commissioner of Police, Mr. Umar Gbadabe, who confirmed the incident, said 12 youths from Ebughu had been arrested.

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He said one of the youths had been identified as the one who shot Ekere in the stomach.

“We are charging these youths to court soon after completion of our investigations,” he said.

Meanwhile, the state Deputy Governor, Mr. Nsima Ekere, condemned the attack shortly after he visited the chairman at the hospital.

The deputy governor wondered why the chairman who was on a mission to settle the dispute should be made a victim.

He directed the Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Mr. Ita Umo-Udo, to dissolve the youth executives at the centre of the crisis in Ebughu community.

He also directed the state Commissioner of police, Mr. Umar Gwadabe, to fish out the culprits and bring them to justice.

He cautioned youths in the state to desist from taking laws into their hands no matter the provocation, adding that government was willing to address genuine grievances.

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