Bassey Inyang in Calabar
It has been disclosed that 117 students have been rescued from the Stella Maris Seminary that were allegedly held hostage following violent clashes between Ojor community, and their neigbours in Uyanga in Akamkpa Local Government Area of Cross River State.
The police, which made the announcement on Saturday said the students were rescued after they were held hostage for three days in the school premises located in between both communities which has been converted to war theatre by youths of both communities.
The State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hafiz Inuwa, who confirmed the rescue of the students from the Catholic Seminary said men and officers of the Akamkpa Police Division got the students to safety.
Inuwa also disclosed that corps members currently serving in both communities were also evacuated .
â€œWhat we did on Friday was to first evacuate the youth corps members that were in the warring communities. They were becoming very apprehensive and the community leaders asked that they are evacuated , which we did before assisting the school in evacuating the pupils.
â€œThe corps members were taken to Awi in Akamkpa LGA, while the pupils are in Calabar. We already have police presence around the school,â€ the commissioner said.
The war between both communities, which has raged for days between gun, and machetes wielding youths from the two communities, had allegedly claimed eight lives as of Friday.
But the police debunk the claim, saying no life has been lost as a result of the communal crisis.
The police public relations officer in the state, Irene Ugbo, who reacted to the claims, through a statement, said the police command was not aware of any recorded case of death following the crisis, but stated that some houses were burned in both communities.