UPDATE: Ogbe-Ijoh/Aladja Crises, The Bloody Gun Battle Yesterday, Arrests, Curfew, Reactions

By Binebai Princewill 

The People of Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom in Warri South West Local Government Area of Delta State and their Aladja counterparts in Udu Kingdom, Udu Local Government Area of Delta State on Sunday embroiled in a fierce gun battle, allegedly leading to the death of many and others sustaining varying degrees of injuries.

How trouble started 

According to the youth President of Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom, Comr. James Etimadimene who hinted The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide on the latest twist of the communal imbroglio, he asserted that trouble started on Sunday the 21st of November 2021 at about 2: 10am when suspected gunmen from Aladja invaded Mr. Alex Tolukoro’s compound behind the Warri South West Secretariat in Ogbe-Ijoh and in the process shooting sporadically while occupants scamper for safety. 

President Etimadimene continued that it was the gunshots that woke Indigenes of Ogbe-Ijoh up who tried to make moves tactically to repeal the suspected Aladja gunmen.

Speaking further, the Ogbe-Ijoh youth President alleged that while indigenes of Ogbe-Ijoh was trying to rescue the entrapped residents at Mr. Alex Tolukoro’s compound, the people of Ogbe-Ijoh was later ambushed in the process by the suspected gunmen from Aladja. 

He particularly alleged  that since they have been pushed to the wall by their Aladja counterparts in Udu, they had no other choice than to embark on a reprisal mission to keep the alleged Aladja gunmen at bay before it escalates beyond that.

However, a source who pleaded anonymity told The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide that attack and cross counter attacks between the two enstranged communities have led to the death of many as well as others sustaining bullet injuries. 

In his words: “The battle yesterday was really blood, is not everything that the media will know but i can tell you that the battle was really bloody as a lot of people have been wounded and others have also died during the banter “.

The arrests 

This reporter was reliably informed that in order to calm the situation down, the Commanding Officer (CO) Three (3) Battalion, Effurun Barracks in Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta State deployed a detachment of soldiers to tame the raging crises and in the process arrested leaders from communities. 

Those allegedly arrested from both communities include the Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom Governing Council Chairman and others while from Aladja the Chairman and youth President of the community was arrested as well.

It was further noted that when the military got to the both communities, about three Ogbe-Ijoh boys were arrested allegedly moving  without  any weapon  but was having Egbesu tied round their bodies, a situation they said was to protect themselves against external invasion upon interrogation by the soldiers at the barrack.

However, it was learnt that after interrogation at the three (3) Battalion, Effurun Barracks in Uwie Local Government Area and with serious intervention from stakeholders in both communities, the Ogbe-Warri Kingdom Governorning Council Chairman and others were released except the youths caught with  Egbesu on their body. 

Nevertheless, the Aladja Community Chairman and Youth president was also released at that same time yesterday in the night. 

The curfew 

The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide learnt that in order to forestall normalcy between the two warring communities, the military has imposed curfew in the both communities with effect from yesterday.

The curfew has been declared from 6pm to 6am everyday till further notice.

Aladja indigene reacts

Meanwhile, in order to balance our report, The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide reached out to an indigene of Aladja to hear their own side of the story, he noted  that while he is indisposed to speak on the matter, he said he will not make counter and cross counter allegations but had called on the Delta State Government to swinge into action by resolving the crises just as he pleaded anonymity.

Our source maintained that it is no longer funny that the Delta State Government could remain docile despites happenings in the two communities, describing it as shameful.

He particularly accused the Governor for not doing enough to end the lingering crises, stressing that if this was to happen in his area, the Governor would have resolved it.

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