The police in Enugu State have launched an investigation into the murder of Emmanuel Mba, the monarch of Oruku Community in Mkanu East Local Government Area of the state.
The monarch died on Saturday in an Enugu hospital after he was shot by uniformed men suspected to be police officers from the police headquarters in Abuja.
His death sparked violence in the community as irate villagers stormed homes of persons suspected to be responsible for his death and torched many houses, cars and other properties belonging to them.
Shot at town hall meeting
The monarch was presiding over the town meeting when armed uniformed men stormed the meeting.
They were allegedly led by a native of the community, who allegedly pointed at the traditional ruler.
Sources said that as the man pointed at the traditional ruler, one if the men instantly shot him.
“The policemen were led by one Inspector Danladi, who also took away one Mr. Agozie Ani from the Oruku town hall where the deceased traditional ruler was addressing a meeting of the natives.
“The armed men invaded the venue of the meeting in an SUV and a Sienna Bus at about 2 pm on Boxing Day, moved into the hall and sought to see the royal father.
“When the traditional ruler who was presiding over the meeting was identified by the three natives, one of the policemen immediately shot him on the thigh and he fell down, bleeding,” the source narrated.
The shooting led to pandemonium as villagers at the hall scampered for safety amidst sporadic shooting by the armed men.
“The bleeding royal father and Mr Ani were taken away by the armed men to the Parklane hospital Enugu but Igwe Mba could not be admitted due to lack of bed space.
“They were referred to the National Orthopedic hospital, Enugu, but on arrival, doctors at the Emergency Unit only confirmed the royal father dead,” a member of the community said.
Following the news of the death of the monarch, aggrieved members of the Oruku community allegedly attacked the homes of some indigenes, believed to be behind the matter.
Four houses, including the compound of the father of a retired federal permanent secretary, Raymond Okenwa, were reportedly burnt down.
Police launch investigation, appeal for calm
Meanwhile, police in the state have launched an investigation into the death of the monarch.
Police spokesperson, Daniel Ndukwe, confirmed this in a statement on Monday.
He said the command has also deployed more officers to the community to restore peace.
“Following the acts of violence that occurred in Oruku Community, Nkanu East L.G.A. of the State over the alleged shooting and death of its Traditional Ruler by armed men suspected to be policemen on December 26 at about 1630hrs.
“Normalcy has been restored after the Commissioner of Police, CP Ahmad AbdurRahman fipcds, ficmc, fcai, mnim promptly ordered the deployment of Operatives of the Command to the area and the launch of a full-scale investigation into the incidence.
“The Commissioner, while reiterating commitment to meticulously investigate and bring the perpetrators of the alleged murder of the Traditional Ruler and the ensuing acts of violence to book, has called on residents of the Community to remain calm and eschew acts capable of further inciting violence in the area while the investigation lasts.
“He warns that anyone found wanting will be made to face the full weight of the law,” the statement highlighted.
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