The Ebonyi State Police Command said it has arrested the principal suspects fingered in the crisis rocking Ekoli Edda community in Afikpo South local government area of the state, which resulted in killings and destruction of property.
Spokesman of the command, Chris Anyanwu, who confirmed the killing of three people in the incident, in a statement, yesterday, also said the command has equally commenced investigation into the crisis.
He gave the names of three people killed as: Kalu Egwu, youth leader, Eme Orji, a younger brother of the State APC Chairman and an Inspector of Police attached to Special Protection Unit (SPU).
“Ebonyi State Police Command is presently investigating a case of murder, arson and malicious damages to government properties and individuals’ resulting from apparent struggle for supremacy, and who controls the area politically, among two notable political stalwarts in Ekoli-Edda, Afikpo South LGA of the state.
“At about 1630hrs of 26/12/2022, a day popularly known as “Boxing Day”, a distress call was received that sporadic shootings and killings were going on at Ekoli-Edda between Ebubeagu operatives who accompanied their boss, Chief Stanley Okoro Emegha, the state’s APC chairman, and another group of men purported to be loyalists to the immediate past council chairman, Hon Dr Chima Eni, who is also the APC flag-bearer for National House of Representative in the area.
“It was further gathered that the open shoot-out was not far-fetched from previous grudges existing among the two factions. In the process, a youth leader identified as Eseni Kalu Egwu was fatally wounded, later rushed to a neighbouring hospital at Ohafia, Abia State, where he was confirmed dead.
Angered by his death, the youth of the area mobilised and went on rampage, killing Eme Orji, a younger brother of the State APC Chairman and an Inspector of Police attached to SPU. The irate youth equally set ablaze the village house of Chief Stanley Okoro Emegha, his Toyota Hilux van and a Toyota Sienna Space bus belonging to the Police Command’s tactical teams.
“When the tactical teams were despatched to Ekoli-Edda to take control of the situation, they were ambushed by the youth of the area at the village entrance. However, the operatives manoeuvred them unhurt.
“The bodies of the three deceased persons have been evacuated and deposited at different morgues. Two suspects were arrested among the irate youth, while others are still at large.
“Also, the two political gladiators at the middle of the whole imbroglio, who happen to hail from the same community, have been placed on protective custody to douse the tension in the area, while a scrupulous investigation has been activated by the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-charge of SCIID here in Ebonyi State.”