No fewer than two persons were killed, while 10 others declared missing on Monday at Isu community in Arochukwu Local Government Area of Abia State over a boundary clash with their Utuma neighbours in Biase Local Government Area and Ukwa Odukpani LGA of Cross River State.
For some years now, the Isu clan have been locked in a bloody land dispute with their Utuma neighbours in Cross River State.
Sources said gunmen invaded the Isu community about 8a.m. and shot dead two people and fled.
President General of Isu community, Elder Felix Okoro, said gunmen had laid siege to Isu land where they killed two natives while about 10 persons were missing.
Okoro disclosed that the hoodlum came from the disputed area at Iheosu-Isu to attack the natives who had been taking refuge at a location in the community.
He said: “The hoodlums invaded Isu clan this morning (yesterday) and shot dead two persons. We have been suffering attacks from our Utuma neighbours.
“This conflict started when limestone was discovered in Isu community and the Utuma have been laying claim to it, killing Isu people. Over 100 houses have been burnt and 60 persons killed with three villages sacked.
“For about two years now, the people of Iheosu-Isu and other villages have fled from the land because they were being killed and their houses burnt. They have become internally displaced persons (IDPs) in their land.
“The IDPs are now quartered at Ohabuike Primary School, Obieze-Isu. We are calling on the Federal and state government to protect Isu people before they kill all of us.
“We have a state of emergency at hand with the over 3,500 IDPs at the primary school. Isu people are grateful to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Abia State government for sending relief materials.
“It costs the community N2 million monthly to buy food, clothing and drugs for them. The IDPs cannot farm because their lands have been taken over and their houses burnt. Any Isu man who goes to the Iheosu-Isu is killed.
“Isu people are worried about the situation. We are being slaughtered like chicken. The Deputy Governors of Abia and Cross Rivers States have visited Isu and Utuma and appealed for peace, yet our Utuma and Ukwa neighbours won’t allow us to live in peace.
“We no longer go to the disputed area which is our land, but they have continued to attack us.”
Okoro urged the National Boundary Commission (NBC) as well as the Abia and Cross River State governments to urgently make further efforts to protect lives and property.
The Abia State Police Commissioner, Mr. Ene Okon, said the area was now calm