By Chinenye Ozor, Nsukka
…As security operatives kill teenager in Igga Community. Soldiers/vigilante trade blames.
Anxiety and confusion has enveloped Igga Community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government area of Enugu state following the alleged killing of a teenager by a combined patrol team of Umueje Vigilante group and some armed soldiers in the area.
The deceased who was simply identified as Onyibo Obiora was allegedly killed by the security operatives while he was asleep in front of his residence when the armed soldiers and some members of Umueje vigilante group besieged the community on routine security patrol of the area.
Crime Guard gathered that Iggah Community in Enugu State has a boundary with Umueje community in Anambra State while the army patrol team from Anambra State allegedly invaded Igga where the said Obiora was shot dead.
Investigations showed that no tangible reason was given on why the deceased was allegedly shot dead by the operatives who entered the community with a Hilux van belonging to an oil construction company, Niger Cat.
Igga community is endowed with natural oil deposits which has been explored over the years for mining but there has been a simmering disagreement between Enugu and Anambra states over the ownership of the land where the oil deposits was discovered.
Amidst the controversy, reports said Anambra State Government allegedly granted license to Orient Oil Company to prospect and exploit the oil deposits in the area.
Crime Guard learnt that the combined patrol team of the army and vigilante group may have been on mission, patrolling the oil well when a trigger-happy officer allegedly shot and killed Obiora in front of his residence. A relation to the deceased, Anselem Onyibo told Crime Guard that it was unbelievable that some one could be shot dead without committing any offence.
He noted that Obiora was sleeping in front of their house when he suddenly heard loud sound and foot prints. He reportedly jumped up from sleep and started running and was allegedly gunned down for no reason.
Contacted for comment on mobile phone, the Chairman of Uzo-Uwani local government area, Cornel Onwubuya told Crime Guard that news of the alleged killing of the youth was surprising to him, and a source of worry to Uzo-Uwnai L.G.A.
He noted that he had forwarded a complaint to Enugu State Governor Sullivan Chime over the killing stressing that he had earlier met with the Chief Security Officer of Orient company who promised to dialogue with the local government council but he never showed up till the time of the killing. “As I speak with you, I have not seen the CSO who had promised to dialogue with us”, he explained.
Also commenting on the incident, the regent of Igga community, Prince Herbert Ukuta said he was yet to know exactly why the deceased was allegedly killed by the combined patrol team of army and Umueje vigilante group stressing that the General Officer Commanding the army in Enugu State has been contacted while Uzo-Uwani police division took the corpse and deposited it at a mortuary in Adani
Prince Ukuta said that Igga is a peace-loving community that will not take laws into their hands and called for detailed investigation to unravel the circumstances surrounding the alleged killing of Obiora Onyibo.
He also assured members of his community that Gov. Sullivan Chime is greatly concern,and will not relent in seeing that justice was done.
Efforts made to speak with the police public relations officer in Enugu State, Ebere Amarizu proved abortive as he did not confirm the incident.