The attempted assassination of the chairperson of a land dispute committee raises concerns about the often deadly trend towards violence and intimidation by land grabbers, desperate to hold on to property wrongly snatched from locals.
Reverend Father Charles Bangbe, Chairperson for Yambio County Land Dispute Committee and Secretary General for Communion of Evangelical Episcopal Church, spoke out about an attempt on his life.
An unknown gunman broke into his home in Yambio at 10pm brandishing an AK47 assault rifle. The gunmen ordered Rev Fr Bangbe to sit down before shooting him. Thinking that Bangbe had died, the gunman withdrew. Luckily, the Rev Fr was only hit in the left hand.
Bangbe deduced the attempted assassination was linked to a case that he was arbitraring concerning land grabbing in Yambio.
“I believe it may be connected to the land issues that I am solving to give back the land to the owners”
Land grabbing continues to be a major source of tension in Equatorian towns and villages, with land grabbers moving in from outside the region often resorting to violence and intimidation to retain ill-gotten property.