No fewer than eight people have been confirmed dead and scores injured following Monday’s clash between the Omor and Anaku communities in Ayamelum Local Government Area of Anambra State.

There were conflicting accounts as to what actually transpired between the two. While some accounts claimed that some youths from Anaku invaded Omor, another account claimed that it was Omor that attacked Anaku.

But an account by the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, showed that there was an invasion of Omor by some armed hoodlums who, according to him, killed six people.

The PPRO, however, said the police were already on the trail of the suspects and that they would track them down to ensure that they face the wrath of the law.

“The suspects, wielding Ak47 rifles in the early hours of yesterday, 6/2/2023, without any provocation started shooting indiscriminately in Omor community, Ayamelum LGA, murdered six people and inflicted serious injuries on two others.

“The joint task force team, comprising police and military, was deployed in the area. The presence of these security forces has reinforced the security of lives and properties and enhanced the provision of law and order in the area. Preliminary information reveals that the cause of the incident is a protracted existing communal dispute between the two communities, Omor and Anaku, in Ayamelum LGA.

“Meanwhile, patrols/operations are still ongoing and the situation is being monitored. Further developments shall be communicated, please,” Ikenga said in a statement.

Sources said six people were abducted from Omor and that they were yet to return to their community.

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At the moment, five of those killed in the attack were reportedly deposited in Nigro Mortuary, Omor, while three bodies were deposited in St. Mary’s Hospital mortuary, Ifite-Ogwari, also in Ayamelum LGA. The traditional ruler of Omor, Igwe Oranu Chidume, when contacted, said he was shocked, and at the same time surprised at the attack given that a peace meeting had been held with their neighbouring Anaku community earlier before the incident.

“I can recall that we have held a couple of peace meetings, and my people are very keen in seeing that peace reigns between us and our neighbours. In the most recent meeting were the leader of Anaku community, Barr Anthony Ifeanya, who is the current Commissioner for Petroleum Resources in Anambra; Chief Livinus Onyenwe, who is the Transition Committee Chairman of Ayamelum, as well as Rt. Hon. Uche Okafor, who is the Speaker of Anambra State House of Assembly and member representing Ayamelum Constituency.

“The purpose of the meeting was to ensure that there was lasting peace between Omor and Anaku. The meeting was fruitful, and we agreed to work together and do all that we can to ensure that there is peace; and that is why Monday’s invasion came as a surprise to me,” he said.

The monarch lamented that some of his subjects who sustained gunshot injuries during the attack have died in the hospitals where they were rushed to for treatment.

“As of that time, eight people were killed. But now, that figure has gone up. Some people who had gunshots have given up in the hospitals where they were kept for treatment.

“As I am speaking with you now, we don’t have the latest number of people who have given up because of the gunshot injuries they sustained. The casualty figure is much more than what you have now,” he lamented.