689 views | Kenechukwu Ofomah | May 17, 2021
Awka – Indigenes and residents of parts of Isuaniocha and Mgbakwu communities in Awka North Council Area of Anambra State have fled their homes following rumours that a bus-load of armed Fulani herdsmen were brought into a forest in Isuaniocha community.
The armed herdsmen were said to have arrived the town over the weekend with guns, causing panic among the people who have started moving their families to nearby capital city, Awka.
TNC correspondent gathered that the Fulani herders were driven away by natives from the forests in neighbouring Achalla and Urum communities, where they were said to have been involved in kidnapping and killings.
An operator of a shop in Isuaniocha who would not mention her name, narrated to our correspondent, how she observed very strange Fulani faces within the area, who came to her shop asking for indian hemp and bottle water for their head.
“Since Friday, I have been seeing strange faces in this area. Two of them came asking for bottle water and weed. I was surprised what Fulani herders would be doing with bottle water and they confided in one of my customers who spoke their language that they were for their heads who visited them,” she narrated.
She regretted that she no longer stays up till 9pm as she usually does, a development that has drastically reduced her sales.
A resident who said he had moved his family to Awka, attributed the development to the fallowed land which was purchased by staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, but have been unable to develop the land.
“That parcel land has been lying fallow for a long time. There is also an uncompleted building inside the portion where these herders live. We have raised the alert to INEC to come and clear that bush so that the place will no longer be habitable for these elements. It is unfortunate that we cannot contact the Police to help because they are presently disillusioned due to the incessant attacks on them. That is why I moved my family to safety and came back to protect the area with others in the area,” he said.
A community in Mgbakwu, Emeka Okoye, said the local vigilante has been alerted and security activities have been intensified to forestall any form of attack on the residents.
He further revealed that the vigilante in the communities, are ransacking parts of the forest to identify the hoodlums.
When contacted, the Public Relations Officer of the Police in Anambra State, Tochukwu Ikenga said the command has since deployed police teams on the receipt of the information.
While noting the area is calm, the PPRO urged people of Anambra state, especially those in the area, not to panic but work with the Police and other security agencies in identifying the bad elements among them.