April 24, 2024

Vigilante kills 18-year-old barber in A’Ibom 

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Vigilante kills 18-year-old barber in A'Ibom

 Abasiofiok Inyang 

An 18-year-old barber, identified as Godwin Jolly Sunday has been reportedly killed in Ikot Okoro community n the Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State. 

Sunday, who hails from Ikot Akpan village (a neighbouring village to Ikot Okoro) in the same local government area, was said to have been killed by members of vigilante group on an unconfirmed allegation of burgling a shop in the community. 

A source told our correspondent that three communities of Ikot Okoro, Ntak Obio Akpa, and Ikot Akpan had formed a vigilante group to tackle insecurity in the area. 

It was gathered that the deceased, who owned a barber’s shop in Ikot Okoro was allegedly suspected by a woman that it was he (Sunday) that broke into the shop to steal some items.  

The woman, who is currently at large, had earlier accused another youth of involvement in the alleged shop burgling. The vigilante, led by one Lucky Lucky (Central Youth Chairperson), had descended on the first accused person but he was lucky to have survived after investigation which he was proven innocent. Despite that, he was still fined N45,000 which he paid to regain his freedom. 

However, the teenage barber was not lucky when the vigilante stormed his father’s house in the night of the fateful day, brought him out and gave him the beatings of his life until he passed on, even when they could not establish any link to the alleged burgling of the woman’s shop. 

Meanwhile, Sunday’s killing has triggered reaction from youths of Ikot Akpan village, who in a reprisal, have invaded Ikot Okoro community and as at last count, at least four houses have been burnt while members of the community including the vigilante have fled to avoid being arrested by the police. 

Speaking with our correspondent, father of the deceased, Mr Jolly Sunday said that his son was just sleeping in his house when those who claimed to be vigilante invaded his house and took his son away and killed him on flimsy allegation that he knew nothing about. 

The father who was speaking amid tears, demanded justice for the death of his son saying, “Justice must not only be done on those that killed my son but should be seen done”. 

A police officer in Ikot Okoro Police Station, who spoke with our correspondent on strict anonymity as he is not permitted to speak to the press, confirmed the killing. 

He condemned the action of the vigilante for taking laws into their hands by killing the barber. He also confirmed the burning of the houses. 

When our correspondent visited the community for fact findings, some burnt houses were seen while persons seen declined to comment on the crisis. 

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