There is tension as the Police in Enugu State and members of Ikpa-modo, Enugu Ezike, in Igboeze North LGA of the state trade blames over the death of 38-year-old man, Bitrus Chukwudi Ugwuanyi.
It was alleged that Ugwuanyi, who was an Okada man (commercial motorcyclist), was killed by policemen for his inability to pay them N50 after he was arrested at a checkpoint at Ugwu Ekposhi and asked to pay N50, Vanguard reports.
He reportedly said he had nothing on him, as he was on his first trip of the day. An eyewitness said an altercation with one of the officers reportedly led to the killing of Ugwuanyi in the presence of his female passenger.
It was further alleged that when it dawned on the policeman that his victim was dead, he quickly raised an alarm that the dead man snatched his AK-47 riffle, which led to the arrival of members of the Igboeze North Central Neighbourhood Watch at the scene.
The Neighbourhood Watch members were said to have fired more shots on the dead body, before they paraded the corpse around the town, celebrating that he was killed for allegedly “snatching a gun from a policeman.” .
Trouble began when Ugwuanyi’s kinsmen protested his murder, saying that he was not known to be of bad character. Enugu State Police Public Relations Officer, Ebere Amaraizu, said that the police would rely on the information that Ugwuanyi was killed in the course of trying to retrieve the AK-47 riffle until the contrary was proved.
Amaraizu, however, advised the relations of the deceased to raise a petition to the state Police Commissioner, Danmalam Mohammed, if they were sure of their new position.