Bayelsa State Government has again charged the people of Isoni and Azama communties in Sagbama and Southern Ijaw Local Government Area to maintain peace, saying its mediatory committee is doing everything possible to resolve the age-long land dispute between them.
The state Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, who made the call at a meeting with representatives of the two neighbouring communities in his office in Yenagoa, noted that the Committee has recorded appreciable progress in its assignment.
The Deputy Governor commended both communities for their show of understanding and cooperation so far, and urged them to maintain the prevailing peaceful disposition.
He, however, said government would not hesitate to make good its earlier warning of dealing decisively with any individual who does anything to threaten or disrupt the existing peace in the area under the pretext of protecting his or her interest in the dispute.
Senator Ewhrudjakpo restated that the present administration places high premium on the protection of lives and property, and therefore would not fold its arms and watch anybody take the laws into his or her hands for any reason.
While assuring law abiding members of the two communities of government’s protection, the Deputy Governor charged them to promptly report individuals whose activities might constitute a security threat in the area to appropriate government agencies for action.
In their separate submissions, the Ibenanaowei of Oyiakiri Clan, King Joshua Igbagara and his Apoi counterpart, King Ikpangi Perekibina, commended the state government for the steps taken so far to resolve the land dispute between both communities.
They both committed to the peace process and assured government of their support in the maintenance of law and order in the area.
Present at the meeting were the Chairman of Southern Ijaw Local Government Area, Chief Nigeria Kia, his Sagbama counterpart, Mr Embeleakpo Alale, the state Attorney General, Mr Biriyai Dambo (SAN), Commissioner for Lands and Survey, Mr Esau Andrew and the Commissioner for Chieftaincy and Community Development, Chief Thompson Amule.