In Cross River, government dethrones two traditional rulers over communal clash

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The government of Cross River state has sacked traditional rulers of two warring communities, Nko and Oyadama, in Yakurr and Obubra local government areas of the state.

The crisis which, it was alleged, has claimed many lives, is over ownership of a piece of land.

The state government has also seized the land in question for overriding public interest.

Unconfirmed reports alleged that soldiers drafted to maintain peace in the troubled area were attacked by Nko people and unspecified number of military men were killed, a situation that may have caused the army to embark on massive destruction of the Nko community.

In a press release signed by Mr Linus Obogo, deputy Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ben Ayade, the authorities demanded Nko community to produce those who shot six army personnel.

The statement read in part: “Cross River State government has ordered the dethronement and de-certification of the Obol Lopon of Nko, Obol Etim Ayomobi, in Yakurr and the Clan Head of Oyadama, Ovarr Vincent Erena, in Obubra Local Government Areas with immediate effect.

“The dethronement and de-certification of the two monarchs and all other traditional rulers in the two warring communities are as a result of the intractable communal clashes.

“Both Nko and Oyadama communities have been at war over a piece of land. The ownership of the disputed land has been revoked and taken over by the state government for overriding public interest.

“Additionally, government has ordered the sustenance of army operation in Nko community until those behind the shooting of the six military personnel are produced or fished out.”