By Paul Obiajunwo, PortHarcourt
Rumuji community in Emohua Local Government of Rivers State was thrown into mourning following the killing of two kinsmen of the community by unidentified kidnappers who succeeded in abducting Chief Emmanuel Obisike Eche, Eze Ochialiri II of Rumuji.
The abduction of the monarch consumed two kinsmen of the community, a soldier, Chikodi Onu who was posted to Lagos before returning to see his people and a widower Sampson Ihunwo who was said to have questioned the kidnappers while they were making away with the monarch.
When Thepost visited the family of the abducted monarch in Rumuji community, Eche Kenneth one of his sons said the kidnappers stormed the palace of Chief Emmanuel Obisike Eche by 9pm yesterday with a Toyota Camry saloon car.
The Abducted Monarch
Eche said: “The kidnappers came to the palace by 9pm yesterday after blocking the two exit gates of the palace, one of them went straight to the sitting room and looked to the Monarch photograph hanging on the wall and came out to tell his colleagues that the person they were looking for was with them.
“Because they could not identify my father with the description they had in mind until they saw his photograph. Then, they went outside the palace where my father was sitting and asked him if he is Chief Emmanuel Obisike Eche, that was how they grasped my father who then starting struggling with them.”
He said it was on the process of struggling with his father that the Army officer heard the noise with one of our brothers. “It was a very big battle between my father and the kidnappers but because they were fully armed, they overpowered us and pushed my father inside the boot of the car and zoomed off to the East-West road through Ahoada.
“While struggling with my father, the soldier who is a member of the community ran into them, he thought they were policemen who came to arrest my father and he questioned them to know who they were and they asked him who he was. As soon as he identified himself as a solider he was shot dead, including one of our brother.
The families of the victims Chikodi Onu, a soldier, and Sampson Ihunwo, a widower said the most painful thing for them was that their sons died helplessly. “My brother, the soldier was just coming back from Lagos to see his poor family when he ran into the kidnappers and he was shot death.
“Sampson Ihunwo, a widower lost his wife three years ago and was left with eight children who are still young. When he heard the noise, he flashed his torchlight at them and he was shot death,” family members said.
The family of the Monarch is yet to receive any call from the kidnappers while the remains of the soldier has been deposited to Military Hospital Port Harcourt, the remains of Sampson Ihunwo has also been deposited to an unknown mortuary.
Ben Ugwuegbulam, the Rivers State Police Public Relation Officer, refused to pick calls put through to his phone when ThePost attempted to speak with him over the issue.