Chaos has gotten the better of Ejuona Obukpa autonomous community in Nsukka Local Government Area of Enugu State over control of security levy.
Some members of the community had protested the alleged imposition of security leadership and the President-General of the town union on the people by the traditional ruler, HRH, Igwe Mathias Ezea.
Eze said that the mandate provoked protest which led to the arrest of five youths fingered to be the architects of the protest by the police, adding that he was one of the victims.
Another member of the community, Ekene Ugwuanyi, said that some tittle holders, on learning of the arrests, mobilised and went to the police station to demand unconditional release of their sons.
However, while reacting to the allegations, the traditional ruler, Igwe Ezea, said the new security personnel were democratically elected.
“He said that the community proposed security levy of N2,400 which is yet to be collected, adding that he arrested some of the “trouble makers because they mobilised to assassinate the character of the new security personnel and were urging the people to kill them when they come to ask for security levy. They equally alleged they were thieves,” he said.
The president of the town union, Fabian Ozioko, who also reacted to the development explained that control of the security levy was at the centre of the crisis.
“Ozioko further explained that money collected by different units of the disbanded security outfit were not accounted for in the past and that was why the community thought it wise to open a central bank account to harmonise all the levies, adding that the community would approve the welfare of the personnel and other logistics when the money is collected.
“The origin of this problem is rooted on whether the security levy would be collected by the units or the central security personnel. However, I have told them that a special committee would be set up for this purpose. None of the security officers will be involved in the collection of security levy,” he affirmed.
The legal adviser to the traditional ruler, Chief Paully Eze said crisis was about power tussle.
“Some persons who are not comfortable with the chairman of the neighbourhood watch, Chinedu Eze, are pushing for his removal but that won’t be possible because he was democratically elected according to the laws of neighbourhood watch elections in Enugu State. The chairman has been working assiduously with his team since they were inaugurated, so, I don’t know why he is being fought.
“According to the state’s neighbourhood watch law domiciled at the Ministry of Human Capital, there is a single Ejuona Obukpa Neighbourhood Watch group and everything about funding is centrally collected but these boys being used to make troubles are insisting that the money be collected in units.
“The people using them have promised to settle them if the levy is collected in units. They are politicians who want to make some points by creating disunity in our community but we have capable authorities to check them. We have equally advised these boys being used to go and learn handworks because they can’t live on security levy,” he said.
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