Chairman, Abi Local Government Council, Cross River State, Faratoh Robinson has used the occasion of the 2020 United Nations World Peace Day to reveal that the 14 year long communal conflict between the Ediba and Usumutong communities in the LGA, displaced 7000 people, destroyed 1753 houses while a sizable number of persons lost their lives during the conflict.
Robinson however assured all men and women of goodwill that under his watch, never again will the Usumutong and Ediba or any other community(s) in Abi, engage in the kind of intractable conflict because conflicts of this kind undermine the growth and development that should ordinarily take place.
While he was grateful especially to youths in both communities, who gingered the resolution of this conflict, he charged the traditional institution and elites in the area to tirelessly work at driving the peace process to a logical conclusion. Particularly, the council boss, while commending the paramount ruler of Abi LGA, HRM, Ovai Edward Osim, for his commitment to this peace process, challenged him do more in providing exceptional leadership in Bahumono and beyond.
On the issue of the return of the sacked Ebijakara community to their ancestral home, Robinson informed that the process of rehabilitation and reconstruction of the community is being perfected since their return is a critical aspect for sustainable peace in the area. He solicited for the state government’s involvement as well as that of public spirited individuals in the reconstruction and return of the Ebijakara people to their ancestral home.
Also speaking at the occasion, Owali Ilem, CRS Director, UN-POLAC, Positive Livelihood Award Centre, thanked the chairman, principal elected officials of the council, the paramount ruler and committed stakeholders of area for the internal resolution of this conflict. He pledged UN-POLAC’s support and partnership in further driving the peace process.
Ernest Eteng, who leads the Bahumono Peace Project Committee, also informed at the occasion that Bahumono people, in driving this project through, accepted peace as the only option as they compassionately embraced and ushered in peace that he knows is good intentioned.
Retired permanent secretary in the CRS civil service, Freedom Ejom, who spoke with www.calitown.com shortly after the event, expressed happiness that peace has finally returned to both communities. “God will bless and crown our collective effort and never again will this kind of calamity visit us again”, he added.
Goodwill messages from the Red Cross, Girls’ Guide, and several others, preceded the handing over of a peace flag to the two communities for hoisting at their common ancestral home.
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