OTV News just gathered from ABN that there has been tension in Amaekpu Ohafia community in the Ohafia Local Government Area of Abia State following a clash between youths of the community and policemen attached to the area over the killing of a 70-year-old hunter, Chief Kalu Okowu, aka Crossca.
It was gathered that some policemen had beaten the victim to death while trying to arrest him for allegedly injuring a fellow hunter during a hunting expedition.
A source described Okowu as a jovial, caring and peace-loving man, who was not known for trouble in the community.
He added that some months back, Crossca, who was the Chairman of Ohafia Hunters Association, a registered group with the Ohafia council, went on a hunting expedition with some of his colleagues when the incident occurred.
The source said, “Some pellets hit one of his colleagues, Agwu Oba, alias Aliko, in the leg. He was taken to Ebem Hospital, where he was treated and later discharged.”
Aliko was alleged to have reported the case to the police, which led to the arrest of the hunters who were with him when the shooting incident happened.
“They broke into Okowu’s house and allegedly hit him with guns. In the process, he collapsed. Efforts by doctors to revive him failed and he was taken to another hospital where he was confirmed dead on arrival by a medical team at the hospital.
“Okowu’s death angered some youths, who descended on policemen in the area. But some soldiers were alerted and they intervened,” the source explained.
The traditional ruler of Amaekpu Ohafia, Prof. Emea Arua, called for calm in the community, assuring that the perpetrators of the dastardly act would be prosecuted according to the law.
But the widow of the deceased, Kalu Nnoke, urged the government to ensure that justice was served on those found culpable as a way of assuaging the spirit of her late husband.
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Ogbonnaya Nta, said he would get back to ABN correspondent, but he had yet to do so as of press time.
The Commissioner of Police, Adeleye Oyebade, had also yet to reply to a text message sent to his mobile phone as of the time of filing the report.
The community wakes up today Thursday, with the sad news of Crosska a known man having been killed after passing through an ordeal in the hands of the Nigerian police force at the early hours of the day, about 5:00am.
It was gathered that the police invaded his house at the early hours of the faithful day without uniform but armed.
They claimed to have a tip off of Crosska having some illegal guns in his possession. In a scene in one of his rooms, the police hit him on the chest with the butt of the gun and he collapsed on that instant.
The police men ran away in their two vehicle they came with leaving Crosska lifeless. He was moved to the hospital only to be confirmed dead some minutes past by the doctor.
This news was as always the case not palatable with the inhabitants of Amaekpu Ohafia community. The community went agog and showed their grievances by demonstration along the streets. This was done without destruction though on getting to police station at Ebem Ohafia ,the police released warning shots to the angry youths to scare them away from invading the station.
The youths returned to their resident community Amaekpu and were amongst themselves trying to find solution to their woes when a convoy of army and police Hilux vans ran into the center of the community.
The soldiers approach was terrifying and intimidating and this made everyone in the village square to scamper for safety. The soldiers together with police men took over the square for about 45:00 minutes shooting and hitting the youths with clubs.
The question begging answers now is this: WHAT CRIMES HAVE THE YOUTHS OF AMAEKPU COMMITTED BY THE SINGULAR ACTION OF DEMONSTRATING AGAINST ONE OF THEIR OWN WHO WAS MISHANDLED AND KILLED BY MEN OF THE POLICE FORCE.