NIGERIA: Cultists Stab 19-Year-Old Father To Death

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Suspected cult members killed a 19-year-old boy, Obunneke Osondu, in Pedro, Bariga area of Lagos State.

It was learnt that Obunneke was killed on Saturday by members of Eiye Confraternity, two hours after leaving his home in Ayinke Street.

The native of Owerri was said to have had an altercation with the assailants who accused him of being friends with members of a rival cult, Aiye Confraternity.

A resident, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said, “Obunneke left his home around 8pm to take some bottles of beer at a nearby hotel.

“When he entered the bar, he met some members of Eiye Confraternity who asked him for money. His refusal to give them money infuriated them and they accused him of being an Aiye apologist.

“The boys, later identified as Bonjeu , Arinze , Ahmed, Feso, Ayo and Akilapa, who were all in the hotel bar, then stabbed Obunneke many times as he ran away from the hotel.

“Immediately Obunneke ran outside,a tricycle driver attempted to take him to Somolu General Hospital, but a policeman asked that the bleeding Obunneke be brought down from the tricycle. He then ordered that they go and call the mother to come and carry her son.”

It was learnt that the tricycle driver went to inform the victim’s relative, but when help arrived, the victim had already died.

It was learnt that the incident worsened when policemen from Somolu Division stormed the area and started shooting indiscriminately.

Another youth was said to have died while trying to escape.

An eyewitness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “While sympathisers gathered at Kusa Street mourning Obunneke, a group of policemen came and started shooting into the air.

“Everybody started running helter-skelter to evade arrest. A youth, identified simply as Tiny, who was trying to escape, fell into a pit, hit his head against the concrete and died on the spot. When the policemen saw him, they took to their heels.”

When our correspondent visited Obunneke’s parents’ home at 30 Ayinke Street, the mother, Irene Osondu, said the deceased was her youngest child.

She said her son was not a cult member and urged the police authorities to arrest his killers.

She said, “My son was a good boy. He sold clothes for a living before he was killed. He has a daughter and a wife and we have not even broken the news to them.

“Police say investigations are ongoing, but we want justice. His father is currently assisting the police in their investigation.”

Meanwhile, it was learnt that Tiny was buried at a cemetery in Odogbolu, Ogun State on Monday.

The deputy Police Public Relations Officer for the state command, Damascus Ozoanni, confirmed Obunneke’s murder.

He said, “From what we gathered, a woman and one Tunde were standing close to Famous Hotel when a guy wielding a broken bottle stabbed Obunneke. As Obunneke was running for his life, the assailant picked up a knife at a Suya spot and stabbed him in the chest.

“Policemen from Somolu Division rushed to the scene and took him to Jolad Hospital where he was rejected. He was then taken to Christiana Hospital where he died.”

Ozoanni said he was unaware of Tiny’s death.

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