This edition of the weekly update spotlights gang violence in the Niger Delta with a focus on cult and gang related killings in Akwa Ibom State. According to data (see map below), over 90 cult and gang related fatalities were reported in Akwa Ibom State between 2018 and 2020. Recent incidents indicate an upsurge in cult and gang related violence and killings in the State, driven largely by battles for supremacy and territorial control among rival cult gangs, as well as criminality. Over the last three months, more than 16 persons have been killed in a series of armed clashes between rival cult gangs in the State. In April 2021, for instance, six persons were reportedly killed and many properties destroyed during a clash between rival cult gangs in Mbiabong Ikot Essien community, Uyo LGA. In May, eight persons were reportedly killed and two houses burned during a clash between two rival cult groups in Esit Eket town, Esit Eket LGA. More recently, on June 21, 2021, three persons were reportedly killed during a clash between members of two rival cult gangs over a call girl at a clubhouse in Idong Afianwe community, Eket LGA.
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