The Nigerian Navy on Friday night invaded an Ebonyi Community where a naval officer had gone missing last month.
The invasion followed a painstaking investigation into the missing of the naval officer who went missing in Umuogodoakpu Mgbo in Ohaukwu local government area.
The state governor, David Umahi, stated this during his weekly live broadcast briefing to the people of the state on COVID-19.
He said investigations revealed that the naval officer was killed and used for rituals by the people of the area with his head taken away by one of his killers.
The community has been having a decade-long bloody land tussle with their neighbouring Agila Community in Benue State.
Hundreds of lives from both sides have been lost and all efforts by successive governments of both states to settle the dispute amicably, have been unsuccessful.
It was gathered that the slain naval officer hailed from Benue State and his captors believed that he was from the neighbouring Agila community.
This made them kill him in retaliation for recent deaths they had suffered from alleged attacks by the Agila people.
He was said to have been on his way to Benue State and planned to go through Effium, another community in the local government that does not have any boundary issue with Benue.
But his GPS receiver system allegedly malfunctioned and misled him into the Mgbo community where he was captured and allegedly beheaded.
Mr Umahi said the military, during the invasion, located and exhumed the remaining body of the naval officer.
He said all those involved have been arrested following the raid by the military.
He vowed that they would all be charged to court to answer for their crimes.
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According to him, one of the killers took the skull away after the rituals they allegedly performed with it.
He warned that his government would not tolerate the murder of anybody.
“This is not an animal. This is not an ordinary person, we are talking about a naval officer, our people must begin to have respect for the sanctity of human life,” he said.
On the killing of a 70-year-old woman in a boundary tussle between Ohankwu in Ikwo local government and Amana Ezza South, the governor directed that the traditional ruler of the Ohankwu community and all political appointees from the community must be arrested.
He said they would remain behind bars until they provide the killers of the woman.
Mr Umahi also announced a dusk to dawn curfew from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. in the state starting from today.
He said this is to forestall illegal entry into the state.
The state had closed its borders weeks ago as part of measures to forestall the spread of the deadly coronavirus into the state.
But some people managed to smuggle themselves in, especially during the night with the aid of commercial motorcycle operators.
This led to the governor banning all motorcycles in the state last week. He reiterated during the briefing that the ban continues.
He said the state government will commence random testing for COVID-19 in all the wards in the state.
“We are targeting 2000 tests in the next two weeks. We shall test at least 10 persons in every ward,” he said.
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