Fresh facts over last week’s protests in Nsugbe Community in Anambra East Council Area of Anambra State following killing of two of their youths emerged with women of the communities claiming they have identified the murderer of their children.
Hundreds of women of Nsugbe under the aegis of Umuada Nsugbe early this morning took to the streets of Nsugbe, to show solidarity with the families of two of their youths murdered by youths of their neighbouring Umueri community.
The deceased, Chukwurah Nweze and Chigozie Anyansi, were killed on November 22 in a violence that ensued between youths of both communities, which also resulted in gunshot injuries to five Umueri youths.
In the early hours of Monday, the Umuada Nsugbe, including the aged and the young converged in their numbers, on Monastery Junction, Ugwu-Enugwu, the exact spot where the youths were slain, to demonstrate their anger over the unfortunate incident.
The women dressed in black, bore placards with various inscriptions such as ‘Say To No Injustice’, ‘Those Pursuing Nsugbe Should Be Warned’, ‘Enough is Enough Peace is the Option’, Nsugbe is a Peaceloving Community’, ‘We are Known for Peace Not War’, ‘Government Intervene in Our Matter’, among others.
Chanting protest songs, the women lit candles and went in procession, first to Ilo Amagu Centre before proceeding to St John Catholic Church, Nsugbe, where they said prayers for the repose of the souls of the deceased and for God’s intervention in the matter.
Speaking after the protest, Convener, Umuada, Hon Eucharia Chinyere Attah expressed their agony over the death of their two sons.
She said, “We came on the protest because they are in agony over the death of our two sons. Nsugbe are not known for war. We are praying for God’s intervention on our plight and the oppression of our enemies.
“The termination of these two young blood is a crime too many. We, Nsugbe Umuada are asking the government to give the parents of these slain youths justice.
“Let all who love peace to join their voices to call on the appropriate authorities to ensure that our people get justice and that the death of these young men is not in vain,” she said.
Hon Attah prayed that the death of the young men will bring about peace for Nsugbe community and wreck vengeance on all enemies of the community, who are bent on destroying their peace-loving community.
She said; “They have boasted that they are more powerful than us because they know that we are not warriors. We are not fighters, we are a peace-loving community and the most civil in this entire area. Maybe that’s why they are treating us like this.”
On her part, President General of the Women Wing of Nsugbe Development Union, NDU, Lady Ngozi Emechetta, regretted that the crisis between Nsugbe and Umueri leading to the killing of their children, ought not to have been as they are like brothers and sisters.
She went down memory lane to recall how the community provided people of Umueri shelter and succour when they were attacked by neighbouring community, expressing regret that they would repay them with bloodshed.
“Most of us, our mothers are from Umueri, same as so many of them. Through mixed marriage, we are now interwoven.
“Even if it is a land issue, everyone should come to the table and iron it out because if we continue to fight, we may get to the point that we would be killing ourselves.
“The person that even killed our sons is married to one of our daughters. He is our in-law! So, you see why we are insisting that our neighbours should borrow a leaf from Nsugbe and maintain peace,” she said.
Emechetta maintained that the Umuada Nsugbe, through the protest are also appealing to their youths to be calm and allow peace to reign.
“With time, everything will come to normal, as long as government intervenes and does the needful.
“That’s why we are praying as Umuada Nsugbe, because we have no other to fight for us except God and we know he will rise on our behalf.
“We are only trying to show the government that we are not happy, so that they can expedite actions towards getting justice for our children,” Emechetta stressed.
It is now exactly 14 days since the murder of the two youths happened and our correspondent reports that there has been no news of any arrests made, although the State Government through the Office of the Deputy Governor, Dr Ifeanyichukwu Ibezim, has begun engagements with the leadership of both communities, towards finding lasting peace.