Avu market incident: Northerners reject efforts to incite ethnic conflict in Imo

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By Tunji Adedeji

Northerners’ communities in Imo State have pledged their commitment to peaceful coexistence with residents of the state.

The traditional ruler of northern communities in Imo, Alhaji Auwal Baba-Sulaiman, made the pledge while addressing newsmen in Owerri, shortly after a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

Baba-Sulaiman, while reacting to the claim that the mayhem unleashed on settlers of three northern communities from July 27 to 28, 2023, was carried out at the behest of Governor Hope Uzodimma, avowed that northerners residing in the state have continued to enjoy the peace and cooperation of their host communities.

DAILY POST reports that the Imo State government, in a bid to rid the state of criminals, recently raided forests and demolished shanties in various dangerous locations in Owerri and its environs.

Some northerners in the affected communities were affected, however, as their settlements were torched in the process.

Baba-Sulaiman nonetheless commended the state government for its efforts at tackling criminality while clarifying that northerners in the state have never been targets of attack by the government.

“These reports are misleading, unfounded, divisive, and aimed at disrupting national peace and unity because we have never been attacked by the state government or its agents.

“Northerners, no matter where they dwell in the country, remain committed to peaceful coexistence and remain a force for peace and national cohesion.

“We stand completely against any and every effort to incite ethnic conflict in Imo and other parts of the country with the use of fake news,” he said.

He warned purveyors of fake reports to desist from misinforming the public but to present the activities of the Gov Hope Uzodinma-led government for what they truly are and to endeavour to verify the veracity of information before sending it out for public consumption.

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