A 28 year old man said to be an indigene of Umudiatu Orlu in Orlu Local Government area of Imo State was on the 20th of April, 2020 set ablaze by his friend at night.
The victim who was later identified as Mr Enwereaku was said to have left home on that day to a neigbouring community, Amaorji Umunna, also in Orlu LGA. On his way back at about 10pm, he was confronted by his supposedly good friend known as Chukwujekwu Nwankwo (aka Nwa Agwu) who we later gathered had earlier warned the victim not to come near his village.
Before the victim died a week after, he told his siblings that realizing that he was late while going home through the major road, he had to go through Amorji Umuna considering the fact that there was no commercial motorcycle at that time to convey him home due to the Covid-19 lockdown.
He trekked through the village unsuspecting of any evil plan against him. On getting to the area, the said Nwa Agwu confronted him. When he explained his frustration at getting home, the assailants, held him and tied his hands together and set him ablaze with Fuel and matches. The arsonists watched their victim almost burnt to dead before they went their separate ways.
According to Late Enwereaku who managed to get home, no help got to him since it was already late but he was able to get home with that degree of burns.
Our reporter who visited the village of the victim at Umudiatu confirmed that the victim eventually died a week after the incident despite surviving the late night inferno on him ignited by his friend.
In an interview with the victim’s elder brother, Izuchukwu said, “he and his other siblings had come home in March, 2020 for the burial of their father who died almost the same time but had to stay back after the burial.After the burial, the lockdown set in and we decided to stay back in the village since we couldn’t go back to Lagos.On Monday, April 21 our brother came back home in the mid night burnt. All efforts to resuscitate him proved abortive as his health deteriorated till he gave up the ghost on April 27, 2020 which was exactly a week after the incident”.
Izuchukwu revealed that his brother while alive told them that Nwa Agwu had quarreled with him in the past and vowed to deal with him but he thought it was a joke and never took him serious until the incident.
The remains of the diseased has since been deposited in the morgue while the matter is currently being investigated by the Orlu police command. The assailants according to a police source are still at large but have sent emissaries to start negotiating with kinsmen of the victim who are grieving over the death of their son.
Meanwhile, what would have led to bloodshed was averted by security agents on the 27 April when the youths of Umudiatu carried the corpse of late Enwereaku to Amorji Umunna ,attempting to burn down the houses of the arsonists. They were later dispelled. Investigation revealed that the community is still boiling over the development.
When contacted, the Imo State Police Public Relation Officer (PPRO), Mr Olando Ikeokwu said he was unaware of the development but assured this reporter that he will confirm from their division in Orlu and get back to us which he didnt do uptil the time of going to press.