The youths of Umuorie, Asa, in Ukwa West Local Government Area of Abia State has accused soldiers of the 144 Battalion, Asa, of protecting criminal herdsmen who kidnap and kill their people in the area.
The youths under the aegis of Asa Liberation Movement, further alleged that anytime the herdsmen attack the villagers, they run into the military barracks while the Army protects them.
The youths who spoke over the recent killing of two persons by suspected herdsmen at Umuorie, Asa, urged the government to check the activities of herdsmen in Ukwa land before the area is engulfed in heavy crisis.
The group in a statement by its President, Hon. Emeka Adiele and Secretary, Uju Ihunanyachukwu, lamented that the deceased persons identified as Mrs Nwanyieze Ogbonna and Mr Chimezie Nwaobilor,who hail from Umuachigide and Umuagbudu Umuorie respectively,were kidnapped and killed by suspected herdsmen on 18th June,2022.
The youths noted that Asa land, a once peaceful and serene environment, has been infiltrated by Fulani herdsmen through acquisition of land by the state government for the establishment of a cattle market.
They youths explained that Asa people are hospitable to all stranger elements, but cannot do it at to the detriment of their lives.
They said; “That we are tired of our co-existence with the Fulani Community whose intent is to rape, kill and destroy our lives and properties.
“We are tired of the killing of our people by the Fulani herdsmen and we’re calling Governor Okezie Ikpeazu to intervene and talk to the soldiers at the 144 Battalion before things will escalate to the level where nobody can control it. The soldiers are protecting criminal herdsmen killing our people.
“We warn that henceforth, any attack on Asa person by Fulani Herdsmen, we’ll declare total war on the herdsmen in our land.”
The youths also urged the state government to direct the military to vacate Obehie market to enable people to go about their businesses.
“For the past three days, the army has blocked Obehie. Our people can no longer go about their normal businesses. We urge the state government to direct them to vacate the area