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The Akwa Ibom State Police Command has announced the arrest of 17 persons in connection with the supremacy clashes between two rival cults in the Oruk Anam Local Government Area of the state.

It was gathered that the recent clashes between the Debam and Iceland confraternities in the Mbiaso and Ikot Etim communities had left three persons dead.

The command said in a statement by its Public Relations Officer, Nnudam Fredrick, on Wednesday, that the arrest followed a special operation ordered by the Commissioner of Police, Imohimi Edgal.

The statement said, “On Monday, April 27, 2020, around 10.45am, the command received a disturbing report of rival cult clashes between the Debam and Iceland groups at Mbiaso and Ikot Etim communities in the Inen clan, Oruk Anam Local Government Area.

“The clashes culminated in the death of Ofonime Uduak and Iniobong Kufre Silas, while the whereabouts of Ikpongiforo Etim and Etang Alex Effiong are still unknown.

“Following the report, the Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom State, Imohimi Edgal, ordered a special operation in the area under the command of the Area Commander, Etim Ekpo, ACP Eze Chijioke, and assisted by O/C Anti-Cultism, SP Daniel Etim.

“The teams involved in the operation are drawn from the Etim Ekpo Area Command, Oruk Anam Division, Anti-Cultism Unit, Anti-Kidnapping Squad and the Operation Thunder.

“The special operation is yielding results. So far, 17 suspected cultists have been apprehended and more suspects will be arrested in the coming days as investigation and the operation continue.”

The statement, which noted that normalcy had been restored in the affected communities, added that Edgal secured the cooperation of the paramount ruler of Oruk Anam, Johnson Obosi, and other stakeholders during a security meeting to decimate cultists in the communities.

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