Bayelsa: Normalcy Returns To Amatolo and Okumbiri

By Ebere Chukwuma

The Bayelsa State government appears to have set the machinery in motion to investigate the recent communal clash between Amatolo and Okumbiri communities in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state. Seriake Dickson, the governor of the state, who was touched by the violent clash between the two neighbouring  Ijaw Communities was said to have reached out to Austin Iwar, the state Commissioner of Police who deployed fierce-looking policemen to the area to stop the crisis. the governor has every reason to do so because the two communities have been known to have a ”long tradition keeping of the peace”.Residents told The Value News that without the intervention of Dickson, the crisis could have degenerated beyond measure as the combatants were armed with dangerous weapons.

Given the return of calm, in Amatolo and Okmbiri, the two Communities at war, Dickson, the state governor was said to have asked residents who had fled to avoid being caught in the cross-fire to return .

That much was confirmed by Daniel Alabrah,  Special Adviser to the governor on Public Affairs.

 Alabrah said preliminary reports indicated that hoodlums and cultists unleashed the violence on the two communities, noting that security agents have been directed to fish out the perpetrators.

Already, Dickson, the governor, has assured that his administration would continue to ensure ”peaceful co-existence between and among the different communities in the state”.The governor was said to have given the assurance when the leadership of Amatolo and Okumbiri, the two communities agreed to maintain peace and restore order in the area,  

 Alabrah, the Special Adviser to the governor on Public Affairs, who could not hide his joy over the return of normalcy in the two Communities at war, disclosed that the governor will meet with all the parties involved crisis , including the chairman of the council and the community leaders soon.

The meeting may have become necessary because of the 2019 general elections as the Southern Ijaw local government area is a strong pillar of the ruling People’s Democratic Party, PDP, in the state. Indeed, Dickson, the Bayelsa governor, who is seeking re-election in the state,  may not want any Community in the eight local government areas of the sate to be in crisis  during this election period.  

Perhaps, to avoid given hoodlums the opportunity to turn Campaign grounds in Communities local government headquarters into a war zone, Iwar, the state Commissioner of Police was said to have made adequate security arrangement to cover governorship, Senatorial and Houses of Representatives or state Assembly Candidates in their Campaigns.

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