Delta governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, has decried renewed attacks by suspected herdsmen on Avwon, Agadama, Ohoror and other communities of Uwheru Kingdom, Ughelli North Local Government Area of the state.
According to reports from the communities, herdsmen accompanied by unidentified army personnel stormed the communities in an unprovoked attack that has become an annual routine, killed no fewer than eight persons and injured many others.
The reports revealed that the crisis started on Thursday and that as at Saturday, lives and property, including farms, had been lost.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, in Asaba, the governor flayed the crisis which had resulted in unwarranted killings of innocent locals.
He called for restraint from the warring parties, saying that he had directed the Commissioner of Police and the Brigade Commander, 63 Brigade, Nigerian Army, Asaba, to as a matter of urgency ensure that peace was restored to the communities.
Okowa also charged authorities of the Nigerian Army to investigate the alleged involvement of its personnel in the crisis and fish them out.
He appealed to the communities to remain calm and peaceful while security agencies “investigate the root cause of the crisis with a view to bringing the culprits to justice’’.
“The unwarranted attacks and killing of innocent locals in Avwon, Agadama and Ohoror communities of Uwheru kingdom in Ughelli North Local Government Area and the wickedness of suspected criminal herdsmen alleged to be aided and abetted by unidentified military personnel are mindless.
“I, however, appeal to the affected communities to remain calm and peaceful. I commiserate with the communities and families on the unfortunate loss of their loved ones.
“I have directed the Commissioner of Police and the Brigade Commander, 63 Brigade, Nigerian Army, to rise to the occasion and bring the culprits to justice.
“As a state, our people have been very receptive to herdsmen and other visitors, but our hospitality and welcoming disposition should not be taken as act of cowardice.
“The state government will continue to encourage peaceful and harmonious relations between Deltans and their visitors, but will not watch outsiders attack and kill our people any longer,” the governor stated.