Chief Okoi Obono-Obla, the former special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on prosecution has berated Cross River Governor Ben Ayade and his government for dethroning traditional heads of Nko community in Yakurr LGA and that of Onyadama community in Abi LGA of the state over ongoing killings and arson.
A son of Nko, Pastor Usani Usani, the former minister of the Niger Delta Affairs speaking over Sparkling FM radio similarly berated the state government for dereliction of duty, adding that it was within its powers to proactively nib the simmering crisis in the bud before it blew out.
The communal war between the two neighbours re-ignited last weekend when Nko youths allegedly shot army commander and six other soldiers sent to pacify and quell the war.
Ayade at the end of a 2-day state security council meeting sacked both yesterday afternoon.
Reacting in a statement shortly after, Obono-Obla said it was very wrong for the state government to make traditional rulers scapegoats for the government’s alleged ineptitude and dereliction.
“The suspension of two traditional rulers in Obubra and Yakurr local government areas by the government of Cross River State is wrong and a scapegoatism.
“I believe It is diversionary for the government of Cross River State to hold these traditional rulers responsible for the crisis that has engulfed Onyadama and Nko communities.
“This crisis has been simmering for the past ten years, and the same government that controls the instrument of coercion did nothing to resolve it?”
Obono-Obla wondered why the government has not done anything against the chairmen of these local government councils that are legally the Chief security officers of the two local government areas?
The numbers of those killed so far and houses set ablaze are yet to be determined.
Meanwhile, the army commander shot in the chest, a Colonel, was flown to Abakaliki, capital of Ebonyi State where he is in Intensive Care Unit.
Yesterday, the state government gave order in a statement that the Nko youths who shot the soldiers should be fished out.