Ethnic tensions between Egbura and Bassa people of Kogi and Nasarawa states has lead to killings and dislodging of communities in the two states, a socio-cultural group, Egbura National Development Association (ENDA), has cried out.
The latest is a foiled daylight attack on Umaisha community in Nasarawa State on Friday.
In a press statement signed by the National President and Secretary of ENDA, Ibrahim Aguye and Yusuf Aboki, respectively, the association characterised the sustained killings as “genocide” against the Egbura people.
The two ethnic groups of Egbura and Bassa inhabit Toto local government of Nasarawa and Bassa local government in Kogi State.
Citing two press releases by Army spokesman, Texas Chukwu, announcing arrests of some of the alleged militias, the group points at their Bassa neighbours as perpetrators of the killings.
They alleged that “apart from Ugya which has experienced sustained attacks by Bassa mercenaries, surrounding villages such as Kolo, Katakpa and Ogba have also come under attacks on different days, as well as many other Egbura communities in Toto LGA are still experiencing guerilla styled attacks while lives as well as properties are being lost.”
“We are constrained to give the concerned authorities some promising lead that would prove useful on the timeline of their campaigns of carnage and terror which has seen them raiding various Egbura communities of Toto LGA,” the statement added.
The association alleged that the sustained attacks have political undertones, and appealed to governors in the affected states to take proactive measures in ending the mayhem.ENDA urged the Nasarawa State Government in particular to “unmask the masquerades behind the latest crisis which we have every reason to believe, has political undertone.
“It should also act to bring those who are hell bent on rubbishing the uncommon feats achieved by the Nasarawa government through ignition of crisis in flash points across the state as we approach the 2019 general elections.”
The leadership of ENDA also urged Nasarawa State Emergency Management Agency (NASEMA) and National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to come to the aid of the displaced Nasarawa Egbura indigenes from Kolo, Kuwa, Kokoto, Kanyehu, Dausu, Ogba, Ugya, Katakpa who are currently taking refuge in Umaisha and environs.
The association also called on the governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, to facilitate the return of all displaced Egbura indigenes from Ogbonka, Ogbaozanyi, Ozugbe, Ahutara, Okanga and Ibiroko Egbura in Bassa LGA of Kogi state seeking refuge in Nasarawa to their ancestral homes.