Onitsha- The Federal Government said on Wednesday that it had deployed armed policemen and soldiers to restore peace to warring communities in Anambra and Kogi states.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that many lives and property were destroyed in series of clashes between communities in Anambra East Local Government Area and Ibaji Local Government Area in Anambra and Kogi states, respectively over a disputed oil-rich area.
Emeka Chukwuemeka, Anambra Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), who confirmed the deployment of troops in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Onitsha, Anambra, said that the troops included mobile policemen, soldiers and plain-cloth operatives.
NAN recalls that clashes between the two communities erupted shortly after the inauguration of the Orient Petroleum Refinery in Anambra by President Goodluck Jonathan in 2012.
``Police are there, they have been detailed to do what they are expected to do to ensure that there is peace.
``We have our men and our patrol vehicles patrolling there.
``There is also a joint taskforce, comprising the army, the police and other security agencies in place.
``We also have our DPO there, our Otuocha Police Station, who is also covering there to ensure that there is security of lives and property.
``Quite a lot of measures, we also have plain-cloth policemen there for intelligence purposes.
``And then, we have been doing quite a lot to stem the tide of communal clashes there. Quite a lot.’’
The police, he said, had also commenced a stop-and-search operation in and out of the major routes leading to the feuding communities.
Meanwhile, a NAN correspondent, who visited Otuocha community in Anambra East Local Government Area on Wednesday, observed heavy movement of soldiers in three trucks around the disputed boundary area.
NAN also reports that armed soldiers had taken over security at the Orient Petroleum Refinery complex and its drilling sites.