SUSPECTED cultists yesterday killed two persons at Oghalegbu village, Okija in Ihiala local government area of Anambra State, thus heightening tension in the area. One of the victims had his head cut off and taken away by the assailants in the presence of his wailing octogenarian mother and other siblings.
It was gathered that Okija community had lost four men through the activities of rival cult groups in the area since November 2020.
A source in the community told Sunday Vanguard that there was sporadic shooting at the popular Nkwo Okija market by rival groups, adding that one of the groups later headed to Oghalegbu village where the two men were killed.
The source said: “One of the youths who was killed earlier was to be laid to rest today (Saturday) and on arrival at the Nkwo Okija market, his friends organized a ceremony at the market as the body was brought from the mortuary.
“While at Nkwo market, the youths identified the store of the mother of someone they suspected to be one of the murders of the man and they vented their anger on the shop belonging to his mother.
They ransacked and looted the store and threw the entire market into panic, with the traders scampering for safety.” Although normalcy had returned, youths from another village, Umuogu, were said to be spoiling for a showdown in the community because they also lost another youth.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu, who confirmed the incident, said it was a war between two rival cult groups.
He said: “It is an incident that involved two rival cult groups in Okija. Arrest has been made and police operatives are on track to apprehend the rest of the people who are still at large. “The Commissioner of Police, CP Monday Kuryas has, however, called for calm and urged parents to pay closer attention to their wards”.