One Dead, Houses Burnt As Party Loyalists Clash In Ebonyi

No fewer than one person has been reportedly killed in a clash  between gangs linked to two All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwarts in the Afikpo South Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

The incident happened in the Ekoli-Edda community in the council area on boxing day.

According to a source who confirmed this to The Nation Newspaper in the area, said rival groups loyal to the APC State Chairman, Stanley Okoro Emegha, and the party’s House of Representatives Candidate for Afikpo North and Afikpo South Federal Constituency, Eni Uduma Chima, were involved in the clash.

One Eseni Kalu Egwu was allegedly shot and killed in the clash while Mr Emegha’s houses in the community were also set ablaze.

The duo who are are loyalists of Governor David Umahi, hail from the community but have been political foes for a very long time.

The clash was said to have started after an election into the leadership of a youth group in the area.

The sources claimed that armed supporters of the two APC stalwarts suddenly engaged each other in a gunfight leading to the death of the 29 years old Mr Egwu.

The source claimed that youths loyal to Mr Emegha arrived at the market square, shot into the air and left.

The development, the source further noted, attracted youths of the community loyal to Mr Eni, who regrouped and engaged the youths loyal to Mr Emegha in a gun duel.

The incident occurred at 6 pm, on Monday.

“At night, unidentified gunmen stormed the country home of Mr Emegha and set it ablaze around 10 pm,” the source said.

Mr Emegha confirmed the burning of his house.

He said: “Yes. It’s true. They attacked me tonight at Ekoli Edda community, and the same people, some of whom I know, I have just heard, burnt my house.

“They attacked me and they are the people that burnt my house. I call on the police and other security agencies to swing into action.

“They know what to do to unravel the truth of the matter. They know what to do.”

Police spokesperson, Chris Anyanwu, confirmed the incident.

He, however, promised to give details of what happened before the close of work on Tuesday.