Anambra State Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo has assured people of Isuaniocha in Awka North Local Government area of the state of permanent solution to the 8years crisis rocking the community.
He said his administration would not relent in ensuring peace in the community and by extension, other communities in the state.
Soludo spoke through his Chief of Staff, Mr Ernest Ezeajuyi during a peaceful protest by over 1000 people of the town at the government house over leadership and land issues causing disunity and insecurity in the town.
The protesters, comprising youths and adults, including oldest man in the community, bore placards with varying inscriptions chanting solidarity songs, demanding immediate attention from governor Soludo.
Some of the placards read, “Governor Soludo please give us peace in Isuaniocha”, “Isuaniocha need peace not War”, “Chikodi Anara should steer clear from Isuaniocha for Peace to return”, among other inscriptions.
Addressing the protesters, Ezeajuyi, flanked by Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Tony Nwabunwanne, commended them for the courage of speaking with one voice.
He assured that government would have meeting with representatives of the 8 villages of the community, including their acting President General, to address the issues of leadership and land affecting the town.
“Soludo’s government has recovered several lands belonging to Secondary Schools across the state and will immediately look into that of Isuaniocha Secondary School land which is one of the contending issues causing problem in the area.
“On the issue of certificate of recognition issued to Mkpuora Ngini as the traditional ruler of the community, the Governor will look into the demands of the people and give them feedback as soon as possible,” he stressed.
Earlier, leader of the protesters and Acting President General of Isuaniocha, Friedrik Egwunwa regretted government’s failure to keep its promise of constituting a committee to look into the matter during their last protest.
“It was this failure that informed our decision to block the entrance gate to the government house so that proper attention will be given to us,” he said.
Egwunwa noted that the community had a laid down procedure of chosing its monarch, which he said had never been done through kangaru election.
“The people totally reject imposition of a traditional ruler on them by few individuals who are responsible for the sell of the school land and other atrocities in the town.
Reacting, Commissioner of Police, Aderemi Adeoye urged the protesters to embrace peace, noting that leadership and land matters could be resolved through dialogue without recourse to violence.
“I got a hint that some persons wanted to pull down the gate of the government house.
“Under the Nigerian Constitution, 1999 as amended, individuals and communities are guaranteed freedom of speech and association.
“However, such grievances can be aired in a peaceful manner while dialogue and negotiation should be the way to go,” he added.