BY SUNNY A. IJOMAH
The National Boundary Commission has flagged off the additional field work on the Anambra/Enugu interstate boundary with a call on the two states to cooperate, for peaceful settlement of the issue.
The flag off which was held at the Orumba North Local Government Headquarters, Ajali, had in attendance, some members of the communities involved in the boundary dispute both in Anambra and Enugu states, government officials from the two states, as well as delegation from the National Boundary Commission led by the Acting Director General of the Commission, Surveyor Adamu Adaji.
Local Government Areas involved in the boundary dispute are Awka North and Orumba North, Anambra state, Eziagu and Oji-river, of Enugu state.
National Boundary Commission first convened a joint meeting of the officials on the interstate boundary in the year 1999, second in 2015, third in September 2018, and lastly in June 2019, during which the technical committee recommended the thirty-day additional field work with the active participation of the affected communities to obtain necessary data that will be used to determine the boundary amicably.
The Joint Field team which is to carry out the thirty-day exercise on the boundary is made up of officials of the Federal Government, those of the states and representatives of the affected communities, and is required to transverse the affected stretch of the boundary and afterwards proffer lasting solution for the settlement of the dispute between the two states.
Addressing the people, the Acting DG of the National Boundary Commission, Surveyor Adaji assured the determination of the Commission to ensuring positive outcome of the exercise, and stressed the need for cooperation of the parties involved.
He asked members of the Joint Field Work team to professionally discharge their duties throughout the exercise in order to entrench lasting peace among the two neighbouring states.
Also speaking, the Anambra State Deputy Governor, Dr. Nkem Okeke who maintained that Anambra and Enugu are sister States, harped on the need for peaceful settlement of the boundary dispute, as he recommended that all parties involved in the settlement processes should imbibe spirit of truthfulness and sincerity throughout the exercise, and emphasized on the temporality of earthly things.
On her part, the Enugu State Deputy Governor, Mrs. Cecelia Ezeilo who traced the history of the two states before their separation with the aim of bringing government closer to the people, said that the boundary issue should not be allowed to bring disunity between the sister states, and urged all to cooperate in the pursuit of lasting peace.
In their various remarks, the Transition Committee Chairman for Orumba North, Barrister Obinna Ikwueto, and his Oji-river Enugu counterpart, Mr. Harrison Okeke, thanked the federal government on the move towards resolving the age long dispute between the two states, and assured the cooperation of their people.