An elder and community leader in Ikurav community, Mbatue Council Ward of Konshisha Local Government Area, LGA, of Benue state, Mr. Baba Agan has explained that irate youths of the community buried an elder stateman, Baba Ihwakaa, alive over an allegation of invoking the thunder and lightning that killed his son, daughter in-law, and grand child.
Speaking to Vanguard in Makurdi, Mr. Agan stated that the unfortunate incident that occurred few days back came after the lightning and thunder that accompanied a heavy downpour in the area.
He said, “there was heavy downpour and it came with lightning and thunder which killed some people including the son of the man, the son’s wife and their child.
“The youth claimed that the man engaged in the practice of witchcraft. They caught him, dug a grave and buried him alive. He was about 70 years old.”
“I must confess that this development is shocking. But I must also caution that we are all one family and the youths must maintain peace and order and not take laws into their hands for whatever reason.
“Unfortunately there is so much suspicion and distrust among us at the moment which is fueling some of these things; and there is increasing tension in our community.”
It was gathered that after killing the septuagenarian, the youths mobilized and resisted any attempt by the police to arrest the masterminds of the act.
Confirming the development, the Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent, SP, Catherine Anene, said two suspects had been arrested over the matter but further investigation was ongoing.
Anene said “I heard that one person was buried alive in the incident. They said the deceased who died by the lightning was a young man, alongside his wife and a child. Lightning killed three of them; the man, his wife and a two weeks old child. Maybe they were in the same room when the lightning came.
“So the youths now said it was the elders that were bewitching people, that his father bewitched him with the lightning. They carried him and buried him alive as a witch and he died.”
The PPRO who described the act as barbaric, cautioned members of the public against jungle justice and advised that such matters be reported to the police for the right action saying “We cannot continue to be living like animals, a barbaric way of life.”