By Dennis Agbo
The traditional ruler of Oruku community in Nkanu East local government area of Enugu State, Igwe Emmanuel Mba has reportedly died from gunshots by men suspected to be policemen from force headquarters, Abuja.
Subsequently, many houses, cars and other properties have been razed in the community, an orgy of violence that started on Saturday and continued on Sunday.
The fracas started on Saturday, December 26 when the now-deceased traditional ruler was presiding over the town meeting and a group of uniformed men believed to be policemen from Abuja stormed the meeting, led a native of the community, who allegedly pointed at the traditional ruler that was instantly shot by the policemen.
The Enugu state Police Public Relations Officer, Daniel Ndukwe could not pick his phone to confirm the incident.
“The Policemen were led by one Inspector Danladi, who also took away one Mr Agozie Ani from the Oruku town hall where the deceased traditional ruler was addressing a meeting of the natives.
“The armed men invaded the venue of the meeting in an SUV and a Sienna bus at about 2 pm on Boxing Day, moved into the hall and sought to see the royal father.
“When the traditional ruler who was presiding over the meeting was identified by the three natives, one of the policemen immediately shot him on the thigh and he fell down bleeding,” an eyewitness narrated.
Pandemonium was said to have ensued after the royal father was shot as the natives scattered in different directions amidst sporadic shooting by the armed men, who made attempts to arrest some of them.
“The bleeding royal father and Mr Ani were taken away by the armed men to the Parklane hospital Enugu but Igwe Mba could not be admitted due to lack of bed space.
“They were referred to the National Orthopedic Hospital, Enugu but on arrival doctors at the Emergency Unit only confirmed the royal father dead,” said Mr Ejike Ani.
Expectedly, aggrieved members of Oruku community were said to have regrouped in the evening and attacked the homes of some indigenes believed to be behind the murder of the traditional ruler.
Four houses including the compound of the father of a retired Federal Permanent Secretary, Chief Raymond Okenwa were reportedly burnt down.
Some vehicles parked within the affected premises were also set ablaze by the mob while the violence continued as at press time.