[From CHINEDU NWAFOR, Abakaliki]
Ebonyi State Police Commanissioner, CP Aliyu Garba, has been petitioned by the family of Pa Amos Irem Ibiam of Ezi Ndi Ogudu Ogwuma, Edda, in Afikpo South Local Government Area of Ebonyi State over alleged murder of their son, late Mr Kelechi Amos Irem, on Saturday 31st July, 2021.
In the petition which was dated Thursday, August 5, 2021, and signed by the elder brother of the deceased, Monday Amos Irem and his step mother, Mrs Felicia Aka Nkama, the family alleged that the deceased was gruesomely who is 36 years old was murdered right inside their compound.
Part of the petition, reads: “We humbly wish to report a case of the murder of our dear son, Late Mr. KELECHI AMOS IREM, aged 36 years, of Ezi Ndi Ogudu, Ogwuma, Edda in Afikpo South LGA, Ebonyi State, Nigeria. This gruesome murder of Kelechi happened at about 6pm on Saturday, 31st July, 2021, in our family compound. The killing was carried out by the following people from Ekoli Edda.
“We are worried that late KELECHI who resides in Lagos, a tailor by profession and who only visited home for the burial of his namesake can be murdered in this manner by members of a group known as More Can Be Done, a killer squad that has been terrorizing the community and enjoying the protection of the powers that be in AFIKPO SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT COUNCIL.
“We hereby appeal to you to use your good offices to intervene into the matter to ensure that the killers of LATE KELECHI AMOS IREM are brought to book.”
But, the Executive Chairman of Afikpo South Local Government Council, Barrister Eni Uduma Chima, has described the petition as a handiwork of some politicians with no political relevance, and who try to take political advantage of everything for cheap relevance.
Chima who explained that deceased was not murdered as alleged by the petitioners, said, “The young man while drinking in a beer parlour had problem with another person and they fought. The other person, specifically is Paul Okeunu, very known in the community and in the course of the fight, he was said to have been beaten up and so, people from his place, his relative, because they are right in his own village, came out to fight in support of him. And a young man who was an Okada rider, carrying the Paul Okeunu was also attacked and matcheted.
“Then, this Amos Kelechi Irem had the opportunity to run to his father’s compound, brought out a matchet and used it to inflict cuts on many people. When the relatives of the people he inflicted matchet cuts on, came, he saw them in their numbers and tried to escape from them; and while he was running, because he was not familiar with his own village’s terrain, being mostly based in Lagos, he ran to the back of an upstair at the centre of Ogwuma and while running, he didn’t know when he got to an embarkment close to the road, he slipped, fell down and hit his skull on the concrete road. He was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
“That caused outrage, but the community people held a meeting at their village square, they concluded that nobody specifically could be held accountable to his death, that it is was an accident, even though it resulted from the activities of a fight which broke out between him and another person in a beer parlour.
“So, when I got the information that they were blocking road, that somebody was killed, I was unhappy about the death of the young man; I sent a DPO to the place and other security agents. They went there, removed the blockade, and the young man was taken to the mortuary.
“They were making preparation for the arrest of the person he fought with when the community concluded in the meeting I earlier mentioned that they were not going to make any case about the young man’s death, because nobody could be held accountable, and so, they went ahead without compulsion to the mortuary, retrieved the corpse and buried.
“I condoled with the family and the community. I wish to also use this opportunity to urge our people not to turn every incident that happen into politics; even incidents that should make us sober and sad, we try to take political advantage of it.
“There is no reason to link anybody, let alone myself to the death of the young man. He is a boy I have never met, our paths have never crossed, we are not struggling for anything, we are inter-related and we do not relate on the basis of community but family.”