Eviction of Fulani herdsmen: Soldiers invade Enugu communities, arrest youths, set house ablaze

By AdvocateNews on 02/07/2021

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Soldiers have reportedly invaded two communities in Enugu State, arrested some youths and set a house ablaze, forcing villagers to flee the town.

Residents said that soldiers, on Wednesday evening, stormed Agudene Village of Adamagu Akpawfu community in Nkanu East Local Government Area and Ndiagu-Akpugo community in Nkanu West council area of Enugu State, arrested some youths and burnt down a house in Ndiagu Akpugo community.

They said the incident started Wednesday evening and continued up to Thursday, adding that they did not know the reason for the action.

Reporters could not visit the community because all commercial motorcycle operators operating within the neighbouring communities refused to go to the area.

According to sources, the soldiers, who came in about eight Hilux Vans, were still parading the villages as of Thursday evening.

It was gathered that the invasion was not unconnected with the eviction of Fulani herdsmen from Akpawfu forests by youths following the incessant destruction of farmlands and crops by their cattle.

Sources also disclosed that since that incident that led to the eviction of Fulani herdsmen last March, soldiers have been visiting the community in their numbers and arresting many innocent youths and tagging them members of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The villagers said that the invading soldiers were secretly abducting young men to unknown destinations.

One of the sources said: “Soldiers numbering over hundred stormed Akpawfu Community in Nkanu East at about 7:30pm on Wednesday. They were moving from house to house ransacking houses. Before then, they blocked the major roads leading to the community before swooping on the community.

“I don’t know how many people that were abducted yesterday. They were looking for our young men but many of them ran away.”

The source also added that the soldiers returned on Thursday morning with policemen and personnel of Department of State Security and blocked all the access road leading to the community.

Another source said that the soldiers also invaded Ndiagu – Akpugo Community, where they razed down a house.

According to him, he escaped being arrested.

“I was in the house belonging to a man popularly known as Bebia at Ugwu-agba in Ndiagu-Akpugo and few minutes after I moved away from the place, the soldiers came and when they did not see who they were looking for, they arrested all the men around and set the house ablaze.

“As I am speaking to you, our young men have run away and some members of the community are relocating to the state capital for fear of their lives.”

The traditional ruler of Adamagu Akpawfu community, Igwe Christopher Nnamani, who resides in Enugu metropolis, said he received several phone calls from his subjects informing him about an invasion by soldiers.

“I am on my way to my palace, come there so I can see who I am speaking with. I won’t like to speak with someone I have not seen on telephone”, he said.

The Deputy Director , Army Public Relations, 82 DV, Enugu, Col. Abubakar Abdullahi, could not be reached for comments no the development.

He also did not respond to text messages as of the time of filing the report.

Posted 02/07/2021 12:25:08 PM

 

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