By Inemesit Akpan-Nsoh-
The People of Obot Itu, in Itu local government council of Akwa Ibom state, have agreed to a peaceful reconciliation over boundary demarcation crisis between them and Obodio community in Odukpani local government council of Cross River state.
Giving the assurance, the Clan Head of Itu Community, Chief Nyong Inyang, who spoke during a sensitization of boundary communities to pave way for final demarcation by the Akwa Ibom state government recalled that, the people of Obot Itu and Obodio had been leaving together for centuries; noting however that, since 1914 when the crisis started, the people of Obot Itu had been deprived of their means of livelihood.
“The people of Obot Itu in Itu LGA and Obodio in Odukpani LGA are people of the same kindred and had been living together for ages. We urge Government to come in and maintain peace in this area and restore justice and equity.
The Clan head also appealed to the state government to repair the road in the community, which had been so deplorable, stressing that the road would revive the economy of the area.
Speaking during the visit, the State Deputy Governor, Mr. Moses Ekpo said that, the Federal Government has assured the people of Federal government determination to bring the boundary disputes between Akwa Ibom and Cross River communities to an enduring end by putting a demarcation mark on the boundary.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in his Office, Mr. Nkopuru Ekaiko, he said that, on July 11, 2017, the Joint meeting with Akwa Ibom and Cross River to sensitise boundary communities on final boundary demarcation was held, adding that, government would not rest on its oars until all neighbouring communities live in peace. He appealed to the people of Obot Itu Clan and other boundary communities to remain calm and eschew violence.
“The boundary demarcation is not to divide communities that have been living together but for administrative purposes. You must cooperate with government to bring peace and development to your communities’’, Ekpo said.
The deputy governor, who is also the Chairman of the State Boundary Committee, assured the people that government would remain firm and just in the demarcation exercise without ceding communities to one another.