Police seal church as members fight dirty
The Police in Akwa Ibom said they closed the Quo Iboe Church on No.112 Ikot Ekpene Road on Sunday to prevent further clash among its members.
Qua Iboe Church, one of the early missionary churches, established in 1887 at Ibeno Local Government Area in the present Akwa Ibom State, but which spread to several states in Nigeria, especially Kogi Benue, Cross River, River and Abia states, had been embroiled in change of name crisis for almost 20 years, with a section preferring it to be renamed United Evangelical Church (UEC) while the diehards prefer that they keep the name with which the church was established.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Zaki Ahmed, said this while speaking with newsmen on Monday in Uyo. He did not give details or reason for the closure but insiders said it may not be unrelated to the long existing crisis in name change and leadership.
Ahmed said that there was clash among the worshippers on Sunday in which many worshippers sustained injuries.
He also said that the police closed the Church when information reached them that one of the factions in the dispute was coming to ferment trouble that might result in breakdown of law and order.
An Aide to Gov. Udom Emmanuel, who pleaded for anonymity, had confirmed the closure of the Church.
He said: “Yes, I saw something like that this morning when I was passing along Ikot-Ekpene road.
“I saw the police gathered in about three vans and worshippers in large numbers, he said.
It was gathered that the police came to the church premises of the church at about 6 a.m. and barricaded the entrance, thus preventing worshippers from entry. NAN