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Peace returns to Abia community

By Gordi Udeajah, Umuahia   |   22 January 2017   |   12:48 am

First military Head of State, Major General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi

First military Head of State, Major General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi

Calm has finally returned to Umuana community in Umuahia North Local Government Area of Abia State, the country home of Nigeria’s first military head of state, Major General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi Ironsi, after many years of leadership tussle that polarised it. The Umuana community has five hamlets.

A special prayer summit was recently convened to publicly usher in the peace that has eluded the area for long.The Guardian learnt that the crisis started after the creation of the state in 1991, after which the first democratically elected governor, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu administration’s quest for rapid development of the state, acquired part of the Umuana land for development into IBB Estate.

The said land was designated as IBB Phase One and Two, but as typical of communities in Igboland over land matters, the issue of compensation by government for such acquired land set into Umuana, such that the community allegedly got factionalised, with each faction laying claim to the compensation.

Under this scenario, there were accusations and counter-accusations that the compensation had been collected from government, but not declared, hence the community’s determination to investigate the allegations.

According to findings, nobody or faction collected the compensation, as it was learnt that the said IBB Estate had not been formally acquired from Umuana by the state government hence, “IBB land is still our land, this truth has come to light, so we can now in peace and unity liaise with government.”

The road to peace was led by a constituted “Umuana Peace Committee”, which had Mr. Ngozi Onwumere, as the leader with male representatives of all the hamlets and some women. It was this committee’s deliberations and recommendations that culminated in the resolution of all contending issues that led to the open prayer and thanksgiving held at the Amaudara Umuana Community Square.




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