From Wilson Okereke, Afikpo
The notion that devil lives in human beings came to the fore recently in Ebonyi State. That was when one Chinaza conspired with her sister and killed Chinaza’s husband for a flimsy reason. The two of them are currently cooling off in police custody in Abakaliki.
In a similar manner, one Simon a member of the local vigilance group, Ebubeagu and cousin to Chinaza’s husband was equally killed in questionable circumstance. This was about three weeks after assailants who stormed his compound and pumped hot leads into their victim. The Chinaza’s husband and Simon, who was in charge of the village’s electricity committee belonged to the late Elechi Awoke’s family.
Trouble started on the evening of Tuesday, May 18, 2022, at Ekemgbo, Ebonyi Local Government, when Chinaza wanted to visit her mother who resided at another part of the town. The deceased objected having considered such hour as inappropriate for the visit because she had not prepared supper for the family.
Sources said following the woman’s insistence, the husband seized her sack bag containing some edibles and other items, an action, which reportedly degenerated to verbal abuses and squabble.
A resident, Echezona Nwokporo, told Daily Sun that shortly after the mild fisticuffs, Chinaza left home angrily for the Amike Aba axis of the town where she narrated her alleged ordeal to her elder sister. The latter in her bid to teach the man the lesson of his life, engaged six men suspected to be hoodlums. They executed the evil assignment the following day using three motorcycles.
He alleged said that the assailants stormed the village in search of their target: “On the particular day, the 37-year-old man was returning home after he had ended his daily activity at Abakaliki Rice Mill without being apprehensive of any misfortune. Suddenly, the six men upon sighting him accosted him and seized him at a distance that is almost a stone throw to his compound.
“Before the rest villagers could know what was happening, the miscreants had already released three gun shots on the man. They carried his body to the neighbouring village where the remains were found a day after.”
Deceased’s son, Kingsley, said he was not at home when the remote cause of the problem was noticed: “But on the following day while I was still contemplating on what to do, I saw fierce looking young men storm our compound.”
He said the suspected killers on arriving their compound, seized him and his immediate younger brother, threatening to free them only if he could reveal his father’s whereabouts. He disclosed that while he was still being held hostage, his father began to advance home on his motorcycle: “As soon as the assailants saw him, they descended on him before taking him to the place where they eventually killed him.”
Daily Sun learnt that the two heartless sisters were arrested and are being detained at the police headquarters, Abakaliki. The suspected killers are still at large at the time of filing this report.
Though it has not been established that there was a nexus between the two dastardly acts, some yet-to-be-identified gunmen on June 9, 2022, allegedly shot to death, one Nwede, at his compound in Aboffia, Abakaliki.
Chairman, Aboffia Development Union (ADU), Christopher Ojiugwo, said the father of four children was relaxing in his compound with a box of snuff in his hands when he received a call from the suspected assailants enquiring if he was at home.
He said it was not quiet long after the telephone conversation that the assailants numbering three, invaded the man’s residence and collected his handset and motorcycle key before they shot him severally on the legs that led to his death:
“The deceased, in his attempt to find out from the miscreants the reason behind their action, one of them became infuriated and shot him severally on his legs and before he could be rushed to the hospital, he bled to death. From the information provided by the deceased’s wife who witnessed the incident, the husband was not at loggerheads with anyone before the incident.”
Deceased’s brother-in-law, Oliver Nwaite, said immediately he got wind of the incident, he abandoned what he was doing and left for the Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, where the victim was taken to for treatment only for him to find out that he had given up the ghost: “We were handicapped. We could not confront fully armed criminals with mere cutlass and sticks.”
He called for government’s assistance to enable them form vigilance groups: “After the attack, one of the killers wanted to run away with the victim’s motorcycle. The person was confronted by a sympathiser who hauled an empty bottle at him. As a result the assailant abandoned the motorcycle and escaped.”
Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Chris Anyanwu, told our reporter that he needed time to look for the separate files especially as there were several other similar cases with the command.