Chaos Erupts at Chieftaincy Coronation in Ebonyi State

Policemen, soldiers, journalists, and numerous others narrowly escaped harm on Saturday in Nkomoro Community, Ezza North Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

Chaos Erupts at Chieftaincy Coronation in Ebonyi State

The community has been embroiled in conflict over a chieftaincy position. The State Correspondent of the Sun Newspaper, Uchenna Inya, along with Godwin Oguta and Chinelo Okoro from Radio Nigeria Unity FM, Abakaliki, visited the community to report on the election and coronation of a traditional ruler.

During their coverage, Inya, Oguta, and Okoro were assaulted by thugs, who also vandalized Inya’s Corolla car. The attackers didn’t stop there; they targeted a Magistrate, Amaechi Nwakpa, and several government officials, including Mrs. Samuel Nweke, Secretary of Ezza North Local Government, and Chika Igboke. Their vehicles, along with motorcycles, tricycles, and other valuable property, were also destroyed.

The thugs, armed with sticks, rods, stones, and other weapons, wreaked havoc after some community members objected to a letter from the state Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, which ordered the coronation of former Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Jacob Nwakpa. The letter, read by Chika Igboke, the Coordinator of the Imoha Development Center, was met with immediate opposition, citing a court order that restrained the election and coronation.

Despite the objections, Jacob Nwakpa was crowned shortly after the letter was read. Following the coronation, armed youths blocked entry and exit points of Okpoku Eze Secondary School, the venue of the event, and began vandalizing vehicles. The angry youths then proceeded to set fire to properties within the community.

In response to the violence, some community stakeholders blamed the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Uchenna Igwe, for the incident. In a statement signed by Peter Nwafor and four others, they accused the Commissioner and Jacob Nwakpa of disregarding a court order by proceeding with the coronation, which led to the chaos instigated by those vying for the chieftaincy position.

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