Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta state.

Ovedhe Hezekiah

Boundary dispute between Umusume and Obinomna communities in Ukwuani local government area, Delta state, has claimed two lives at the annual Ikenga cultural festival.

It was gathered that the two deceased persons were attacked in a violent clash between youths of the warring communities at about 6pm on Thursday 27th.

READ ALSO : Coronavirus scare: Pharmacies hike price of disposable nose mask in Plateau

They died while receiving treatment at an undisclosed hospital.

The incident has stirred tension in Obiaruku, headquarters of the local government area.

As at Friday afternoon, youths of Obinomna community were threatening to cause more havoc.

People who are familiar with the long- drawn conflict between Umusume and Obinomna say the dispute takes on a violent twist every year in the last three years.

“In the last three years or more, there has been an unresolved boundary dispute, un-clearly defined and demarcated boundaries between Umusume quarter of Obiaruku and Obinomna quarter of Umukwata.”

“The tension between the two quarters always assume a disturbing dimension whenever Obinomna people want to celebrate their annual cultural festival, known as Ikenga festival.”

“The two quarters clashed on Thursday 27th which was the grand finale of the festival, in the course of celebration, it was alleged that Obinomba youths marched into Umusume quarters, in Obiaruku.

“This provoked the Umusume youths, who tried to stop them from approaching further and this resulted in a clash despite the presence of security officers at the event.”

READ ALSO : Akwa Ibom, preparing for hassles-free rainy season

“So far, we learnt that some unidentified youth have lost their lives and there is a palpable atmosphere of war between the two communities. Business activities and free movement of people is being disturbed with a lot of people displaced from their homes.”

Efforts to get comment on the incident from the Police Public Relations Officer of Delta state, Onome Onovwakpoyeya were not fruitful at press time.