By Steve Oko
There is tension and palpable fear in Umuorie Autonomous Community in Ukwa West Local Government Area of Abia State following the murder of a tipper driver by unknown gun men.
The victim identified as Israel Nwobilo, according to a community source, was abducted with his assistant driver ( condoctor) on Saturday, June 18 when they went to a sand site at the neighbouring Umukalu Community to excavate sand.
Irate youths in the community went on rampage on Monday with the corpse of the victim to register their grievances.
The youths in a viral video carried the corpse of the victim stripped to wooden poles and marched through the streets of Obehie town.
The overtly livid youths who also carried fresh palm leaves in their mouths signaling danger, chanted war songs as they protested.
Confirming the incident to Vanguard, a community source said the victim went to a sand excavation site at a neighbouring Umukalu Community to get sand when he was abducted with his assistant driver (conductor) by unknown gunmen into the nearby bush.
The ‘conductor’ was said to have been so lucky that he later escaped from their abductors and raised the alarm in the community.
Consequently, the youths mobilised on Monday and began to comb the bush in search of the victim.
His lifeless body was said to have been discovered by the search party who tied it to sticks and convey it home before advancing to Obehie town for a protest.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO in Abia, Geoffrey Ogbonna, did not pick his calls.
He had also yet to respond to the text message sent to him as at the time of filing this report.
Kidnapping has been on the increase in Abia in the recent times.
Prelate of Methodist Church, His Eminence Samuel Uche, and two clerics traveling with him were Kidnapped and released after a ransom of N100 million was paid about three weeks ago.
Similarly, a medical doctor, Professor Uwadinachi Iweha who was abuducted on June 6 in front of his house in Umuahia the state capital is yet to regain his freedom.
Umuahia-based journalist and former Correspondent of the SUN Newspapers, Mr Chuks Onuoha who was abuducted on Tuesday last week only regained his freedom on Saturday morning.
Traveling through Okigwe/ Uturu/ Umunneochi axis, has become a dangerous adventure following the increasing activities of kidnappers especially suspected herdsmen around the corridor.
The Methodist Prelate who was Kidnapped around Umunneochi confirmed that his abductors were herdsmen.
Youths in Umunneochi later in a protest demanded immediate relocation of the Regional Cattle Market at Lokpanta which they alleged, provides habour for the criminals.