It was another exhilarating moment as the skirmishes that wanted to rear it ugly face between some communities bordering NGADA and Kurmi LGA was annihilated following a peace/sensitization meeting held at the conference Hall of Kurmi Local Government Area Secretariat.
The meeting which was presided over by Rev. (Hon) Joseph T. Nagombe, the coordinator NGADA Special Development Area and Hon. Ibrahim Stephen Agya, the chairman Kurmi L.G.A has in attendance the His RH, the third class chief of Kurmi Mr. Samaila Maiwuya, village head of Didan, Galea, Ndaforo, Ashuku, Asha, Akwento and Boko ward and some heads of law enforcement agents.
In his keynote address, Hon. Agya informed the gathering that the meeting was aimed at putting to an end the lingering, smouldering misunderstanding between the villages along the border of NGADA and Kurmi LGA and therefore demanded each village head to explain how boundary issue has affected the people of their area for onward deliberation. He instructed that the Administrative map of Taraba State showing NGADA Special Development Area be passed to each person for sighting.
Starting from the village head of Boko ward Mr. Sule Akwei, each village head took turn and narrated to the gathering the misunderstanding that ensued in their area since the creation of NGADA Special Development Area and how that has affected the peaceful coexistence of the People. Though each village head acknowledged and reiterated their satisfaction with the creation of NGADA Special Development Area as they maintained that it was a welcome development, but vented their displeasure on issues they felt NGADA people have acted contrary to their limit. After their submissions, it was observed that the major cause of the misunderstanding was the lack of clarity of the boundary between NGADA and Kurmi LGA at each ward.
Clearing doubts on issues raised by the various village heads, Rev. (Hon.) Nagombe T. Joseph, the coordinator NGADA Special Development Area, presented a stunning, convincing and a master class speech that left his audience with clear view of issues and calmed all nerves.
The coordinator started by expressing his satisfaction with the response of the people to the call for the meeting and occasionally linked his points with historical facts about Kurmi since colonial administration as he substantiates his claims. He mentioned some Ndola villages which were made ward head but were dessolved by then chief of Kurmi Mr Tobi Yarafa (of blessed memory). He queried the political zoning arrangement of Kurmi LGA which according to him could not favour precisely the Ndola people. He stated that if not for Abong ward which he was not sure of, Ndola people could be found in all the ten wards of Kurmi LGA but the political arrangement has deprived the Ndola people living in wards dominated by tigun and inchen tribes. That for example, Ndola people living among either of the other tribes has no right contesting for chairmanship because the zoning was made according to tribe.
He related the level of backwardness of Ndola people under the various local government from which NGADA was carved which according to him prompted the people to struggle for and the eventual creation of the development by Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku.
According to him, the Ndola people from 116 different villages gathered in Sunkuru 2013 and agreed that they will seek for the state government consideration of the area as a development area.
On issues raised by some village heads that NGADA people have taken over their farm lands, the coordinator cleared the air by stating that any farm land owned by people in Kurmi which have been carved into NGADA still remains that of the people in Kurmi, likewise also, any farm land owned by people of NGADA that is now in Kurmi still remains that of people of NGADA because boundary was purely for administrative purpose and therefore should not be mistaken for ownership of land.
Rev. Nagombe admitted before the gathering that his people maybe for the joy of the creation of NGADA must have over acted in some areas which he clearly demonstrate his readiness to address. He stated that Ndola, Tigun and Inchen tribes were one and therefore urged them to live together in Peace. He maintained that the creation of NGADA Special Development Area was for the good of the people of the area and therefore should not be mistaken or be interpreted for different meaning.
Speaking on the NGADA cocoa farm, the coordinator informed the people that the farm was targeted at recruiting over two thousand staff which according to him will include other tribes hence NGADA should not be seen as tribal issue. The coordinator gave out a copy of book authored by him on Ndola People And Land in Africans History to each village head.
At the end of the meeting, both Nagombe and Agya agreed before the gathering to work together to sponsor another team that will go throughout the boundary of NGADA and Kurmi to set up beacons for clarity of border issues.
Granting interview to the press men after the meeting, both Nagombe and Agya expressed their satisfaction with the understanding reached and promised to work together to ensure that lasting solution was achieved.