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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Anambra Community Protests As Revenue Agents, Security Official Stone Old Man to Death


By Izunna Okafor, Awka

Agulu community in Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State was recently astir, as indigenes of the community thronged en masse to protest over what they described as heinous death of an old man from Nneogidi Village of the community, Mr. Peter Uduekwelu, who was reportedly stoned to death by revenue agents working for the Anambra State government.

Mr. Uduekwelu was said to have met his untimely death on his way back from Afo Agulu where he went to buy food items.

It was gathered that the revenue agents had intercepted the bus carrying Mr. Uduekwelu and other passengers. The revenue agents were identified as Akpata (whose phone number is 08136420862 and who was also said to be a member of local vigilante of Neni community); Opopo (whose phone number is 07039450594); and Mr. Owo (who is the leader of the group), among others.

Howbeit, the driver of the bus, in a bid to dodge off the touts, engaged his gear and began to speedily reverse his car.

According to reports, this made the leader of the touts (Mr. Owo) to order his boys to stone the driver who was already on motion.

However, as one of the touts picked up a heavy stone and fired it at the driver, it missed its target and hit Mr. Uduekwelu on the head, which made him lose consciousness and begin to bleed profusely.

It was gathered that the revenue agents immediately entered their vehicles and zoomed off after discovering what they did. The victim was however rushed to a health center located at Amatutu Agulu, where he was rejected on the grounds that his health condition was very critical due to the injury he sustained on his head.

“The aged man was thereafter rushed to St. Joseph Hospital in Adazi, where he was admitted and managed for few hours before he was transferred to Nnamdi Azikiwe Teaching Hospital, Nnewi on the 28th September, 2023. He was admitted at Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi from 28th September 2023 till 4th October 2023 when he eventually died from the severe injury he sustained on his head,” said one of the villagers.

Protesting against the painful death of Mr. Uduekwelu, youths of Agulu who converged at Afọ Agulu Market, were seen wielding placards with different inscriptions that help drive home their message, feelings, expressions.

While noting that they do not want to sight any revenue agents in Agulu community henceforth, the youths unanimously called on Governor Chukwuma Charles Soludo and security agencies in the State to intervene and ensure that the touts, who are notorious for all forms of illegalities, are quickly apprehended and brought to book.

It was also gathered that the family of the deceased and the community have also formally petitioned the Anambra State Police Command and the State Government over the matter.

The petitioners hinted that the suspects, despite committing such capital offence of murder, were seen boasting that they cannot be prosecuted by any law enforcement agency as they dine and wine with top officers of the Nigerian Police Force.

“The Subscriber of Mobile Number 08136420862 (a.k.a Akpata) is a member of Vigliante Neni Town and has access to guns. He threatened our client’s family members that he will use his gun to assassinate whoever reports this case of murder to any law enforcement agency.

“Sir, in view of the above background, we are constrained to turn to your esteem office to find succor to the ordeal the suspects have put our clients into. We call on you to beam your search light into this matter, to ensure that the suspects are prosecuted accordingly for conspiracy, murder and threat to life.

“We are confident that your esteemed office is the most qualified to put the suspects in the right position of the law, hence this petition. In anticipation of your prompt consideration of this petition, be assured of our warm regards,” they said in the strongly-worded petition.

When contacted by this reporter, Izunna Okafor; the Spokesperson of the Anambra State Police Command, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu, confirmed the incident and said efforts were on top gear to apprehend the fleeing suspects.

“The case is still under investigation. The people came to our office; and we are making serious efforts to arrest the suspects, who are currently at large. Our men were even in the community yesterday. So, we are working hard to get the suspects arrested,” he said in a telephone interview.

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