Ben Ezechime, Enugu
The Commissioner of Police in Enugu State, Kanayo Uzuegbu, has said at least, eight persons have so far been arrested by the Police in connection with murder of the traditional ruler of Adani Autonomous Community in Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State, HRH Patrick Ezugwu.
Igwe Ezugwu was reportedly shot dead on Christmas eve at his palace by unknown persons.
CP Uzuegbu said that the police would deal with all those found culpable in the crime.
The commissioner said this at the scene of the crime, when he was received by the President-General of the community, Chief S.N Utazi.
Speaking, Utazi said his people were impressed by the swift response from the state government immediately the sad news broke.
He said that nobody anticipated such heinous crime as the community had been at peace in the recent past.
Utazi called on the police to continue its manhunt for the remaining suspects and ensure that no stone was left unturned at punishing the assailants in order to serve as deterrent to others.
Also speaking, the traditional Prime Minister of the community, Dr. Obinna Ayogu, said they were dumbfounded by the shooting and murder of the royal father whom he described as a peaceful man.
Ayogu commended the State Governor, Peter Mbah, and the security agencies for living up to expectation through the positive steps they had taken meant at reassuring the people of the community and the local government at large of their safety.
The Police Commissioner said, he was at the Adani community with his team to assess the situation for effective police action.
He maintained that both the masterminds and executioners of the criminal act would be fished out to face the wrath of the law.
“His Excellency, the Governor of Enugu State, said I should relocate to this local government and ensure that all those responsible for this unfortunate act are apprehended in line with the state’s zero tolerance for crime.
“Immediately the news got to me, I dispatched my men from the Criminal Investigation Department and the Area Command, led by the Area Commander, to visit here and ensure that all those involved are arrested because no incident like this should happen without severe consequences.
“I want to disclose that so far, we have made arrest of eight prime suspects and we will continue to trail the remaining criminal masterminds of this murder.
“We must get to the root of this matter by unraveling all those behind the killing.
“I want to let you know that the Governor is not happy that a breach of this nature could occur, so he asked me to come here to ensure that all the criminals are fished out.
“I can assure you that these criminals will never go unpunished. So, all those responsible for this crime will be brought to book and punished according to the law,” he added.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, Daniel Ndukwe, said the crime happened at about 9pm on Sunday by armed hoodlums suspected to be assassins.
The PPRO further said in a statement that the commissioner had already directed the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-charge of the State Criminal Investigation Department to carry out a full-scale investigation that will lead to the prosecution of everyone found wanting in the case.
The Chairman of the council area, Hon. Chukwudi Nnadozie, said he was glad the governor had already picked interest in the matter with some of the suspects behind the bar.
“I want to commend the governor for responding almost immediately the event happened.
“The governor personally reached out to me about the deployment of local intelligence to uncover those behind this because he said all those culpable must face the wrath of the law.
“The CP also called me about the development, and promised to be here.
“I want to appreciate the security agencies for their efforts. In fact, the Area Commander slept over in this place.
“The way the state government and the security agencies reacted to the development has brought everything under control,” he noted.