When a group of people stay together, at some point, argument and dispute are bound to arise at some point and if such dispute is not properly managed, it could escalate to something more serious like violence.
Violence is an act of physical abuse that is aimed at hurting, injuring or even killing the individual being physically attacked.
This post seeks to enlighten the reader about some of the sad instances of violence that have occured in some parts of the Yakurr and Abi communities and how some of them were successfully resolved.
The major source of these violence scenarios are understood to have generated from mainly boundary conflicts. The issue with boundary conflict is that it tends to cause a lot of mayhem, confusion and distrust among the people which in turn increases the number of displaced indigenes who tend to suffer the most as a result of these conflicts.
In Ugep and Idomi townships, the purpose of boundary conflicts within these terrains have been to either increase, control or monopolize its interest on farmland resources.
Farming and agriculture are basically the major occupation of the people within these communities and they depend heavily on farmlands for their survival.
Ugep has been identified as a rather troublesome clan after engaging in various conflicts concerning land with most of the clans around it which include Mkpani, Idimi, Ekori and Adim.
However, the most notable was the conflict with Idimi which this piece will center on. This boundary conflict began as far back as 1928 when the two communities were still under Ugep township. There are three major causes of these conflict which are:
a. the two communities had failed to define the boundaries between them, it was notices that even after the unfortunate tragic episode that happened in 1929 that led to a lot of deaths, the people had still failed to demarcate the boundaries between them.
Everyone was free to farm anywhere they wished either on Ugep or Idomi because they supposedly looked at each other like brothers and sisters.
However, this wasn’t the case as it ended up being the genesis of the whole fracas of the 1992 land conflict between the communities.
b. After the 1929 episode, there were some peace initiatives made by some chiefs of the two communities. Unfortunately, the communities didn’t completely embrace the initiatives as they continually acted like no agreement had been reached. Most of the farm products were uprooted and there was serious molestation and brutality of persons.
c. there were also tons of killings, kidnappings from members of both communities. Sadly, it was mainly farmers that were on the receiving end of all that was claimed by both of these communities.
The conflict had a lot of effects on the affected communities as lots of lives were lost in the process. Due to the publicity the fiasco had generated, the Cross river state government had to intervene and an arbitration committee was setup to look into the conflict and ascertain means of settling the dispute between the communities amicably.
They resolved that the communities abandoned the old mode of leasing their lands and accept the reality that in modern times such archaic methods would not be good enough.
They were advised to rather clearly demarcate the territories as the law would be able to recognize that these territories belong to Ugep while these area belongs to Indimi.
While the demarcation may reduce the supposed brotherhood existing between the clans but it would go a long way in curbing these conflicts from springing up often.
They also advised the Cross river state government to take swift steps in acquiring the land causing the discord between the two clans and use it for economical purposes that it believes would be largely beneficial to the growth of the communities.
Conflict in respect of lands is one of the major reasons why violence erupts in some local governments in Cross river state.
Another notable violent incident was in Abi local government. This clash was between the people of Ediba and Usumutong towns. On the 5th of ApriClick here to see the latest Jobs opportunities in Nigeria.
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