Tagbo OKoye’s body being exhumed by security official.
By Valentine Amanze
The age-long feud between Omor and Anaku communities in Ayamelum Local Government Area of Anambra State has sprang up again, with the Police’s discovery of a shallow grave with fresh human corpse believed to be that of one Mr. Tagbo Okoye, a native of Omor.
Okoye, 53 years old, was reportedly killed in his farm at Omor by two suspected young men from neighbouring Anaku community and allegedly sacrificed to their deity in Anaku known as “Ekwensu’’.
Okoye was declared missing by family members on January 10, 2022 after he went to harvest cassava at about 8am and did not return.
This is happening barely a year when several lives and properties were lost in the two communities over allegation of human sacrifices to the deity – Ekwensu (devil).
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in Anambra State, ASP, Ikenga Tochi, confirmed the incident. He said Okoye’s body was discovered in a shallow grave in Omor community and had been recovered and deposited in a morgue in the area.
“The case is an isolated incident, because since the assumption of office by the new Police Commissioner, we have explored all necessary means to maintain law and order in the state.
“The peace the people of the state are enjoying currently is as a result of the hard work of the commissioner and the Anambra State Police Command”, Ikenga stated.
He pointed out that Police had implored options of alternative dispute resolution, which had helped in maintaining peace in the state until the current incident.
“We have also had some meetings with them, which most of them signed agreement to let peace reign; but most unfortunately the ugly incident occurred. If you have been following the trend of things in Omor and Anaku communities, you will agree with me that we have achieved a lot”, the PPRO said.
He, however, commended members of the two communities for coming up with useful information to nip the problem in the bud, stressing, “When we got the information about a mutilated corpse laying in a shallow grave, our men rushed to the scene, cordoned off the area and recovered the corpse and was deposited in the morgue while we are waiting for the autopsy.”
According to him, his men were currently on ground to pick up materials that would be useful for the investigation, stressing that currently, normalcy has returned in the area and the Police fully on ground in a mop-up operation.
He also disclosed that some arrests had been made by the police.
Meanwhile, His Royal Highness, Igwe Chris Oranu Chidume, Eze Ana-ukwu, the Igwe of Omor Kingdom, has appealed to his subjects to remain calm, persuading them to look up to the government for justice.
Expressing confidence on the government’s intervention on the matter, the monarch said that Governor Willie Obianor has demonstrated fairness and great commitment in resolving the age-long feud between the two communities.
Also, Tony Ifeanya, former chairman of Ayamelum council, disclosed that he got the information that an Omor indigene was murdered in his farm and dismembered with accusing fingers pointing at the people of Anaku.
“As a community leader, I have taken it upon myself and with the involvement of the security operative to help apprehend the perpetrators of this dastardly act and hand them over to the police.
“No one has the right to take another person’s life, so the situation is that some names had been mentioned and forwarded to the Police for further investigation”, he disclosed.
Also, Benjamin Onyeabo, the current CTC Chairman and the Chief Security Officer of Ayamelum council, confirmed that some Anaku people killed Okafor Tagbo, at his farm, while harvesting cassava two days ago.
As a result, he said that Omor people were not at ease with the situation. “But because of the efforts of the leadership of the two communities, we have persuaded the youths to sheet their sword to enable us look into the matter legally,” he said.
According to him, with the manner of the killing and mutilation of the body, it is obvious that the man was sacrificed to their Ekwensu deity, stressing, “The community has been clamoring for the deity to be removed from Anaku, because as long as the deity remains there, they will keep on killing people year in year out for sacrifice.
“There is no year that passes by without Omor people missing and used for sacrifice by Anaku people. It is very sad that this ugly incident repeated itself on the 10th of January this year”, Onyeabor lamented.
Also, the President General of Anaku Community, Mr. Paul Nwuba, the dastardly act, stressing, “It is very wrong for anyone to take another person’s life; and quite unfortunate that this ugly incident occurred when we thought we were already settling the issues on ground between the two communities.
“As the President General of Anaku, and other stakeholders in the community, we have resolved that the law should take its course, since Anaku people have given the names of the suspects to the police”, he stated.