SEQUEL to last Sunday’s gruesome
killings of no fewer than 13
congregants by some gunmen at St.
Philips Catholic Church, Ozubulu,
Ekwusigo local government council
of Anambra state, more revelations
are been made from different local
authorities to discredit the import
of some negative stories about the
sleepy community.
Though, normal life was yet to
return in the area as the community
was left desolate and the youths,
for fear of arrest by the security
operatives, were rarely seen on the
roads except children and women
who are in clusters at village squares
discussing silently as foreigners
troupe in in search of scoops.
Meanwhile, the church has been
sealed by the Nigerian Police with a
ribbon inscribed’ Crime scene: Do not
Cross, and some combatant mobile
policemen were strategically stationed
around the premises. Some personal
effects apparently belonging to the
victims are still littered around the
church compound including shoes,
clothes, umbrella among others.
Nevertheless, the indigenes of
Ozubulu are more worried about the
way the life of their illustrious son,
Chief Aloysius Ikegwuonwu alias
Bishop was been threatened and his
priced reputation dragged to the mud.
Some of them are of the opinion that
enemies cashed in on the opportunity
to malign the image of their brother by
enroping him into drug business that
aftermath led to drug war for double
crossing.
This allegation was strongly
condemned by the community leaders
particularly the traditional leader
of the town, Igwe Fidelis Nnamdi
Oruche(Okife 1 of Ozubulu).
When Nigerian Pilot visited him in
his palace, he narrated how far the
hierarchy had intervened over the feud
among his subjects in South Africa that
apparently led to the mayhem.
Oruche said that the fatal attack
wouldn’t have been unconnected with
the staggering power tussle among his
subjects that base in far away South
Africa.
He said the problem started since
10 years ago when the town union,
Ozubulu Development Union, ODU,
which has an affiliate in South Africa,
wanted to elect a new President
General there.
This created a long stretched
disagreement over who would be
their leader in that country and it
eventually torn them apart. But
the overall President General both
in Ozubulu and in diaspora, Engr.
Norbert Anigbogu intervened by
inviting the two splitted factions back
home for a peaceful reconciliation.
To effect this, Igwe Oruche continued,
when they returned, a traditional oath
was prepared for them to take in order
to enthrone brotherliness among them
and further quell the rift between the
factions but most of them refused to
undertake that, saying that they were
Christians. At this point, an alternative
was made and one Reverend father
Chidolue was invited to perform the
Christian role of oath taking which
was done and all appreciated it.
But later, the conflict was rekindled
by some of them who reneged the
agreement made in the course of
the oath taking, accusing that the
traditional ruler was not present
during the oath taking therefore, the
reconciliation was said to be void and
improper.
In spite of this, Norbert led Executive
never relented, 3 years ago, they went
further to invite Alloy Ikegwuonwu
group and the rival group to return
home for another peace move.
Igwe Oruche who has been on throne
for the past 18 years gave them a stern
warning this time, to maintain peace
which they equally adhered to and
were taken to the Blessed Sacrament
of St. Michael Catholic church, where
they embraced themselves as brothers
and they became happy with each
other again.
Igwe Oruche recalled that it was
since 2007 during the reign of one
‘Utonwa’ who was then the PG of
ODU in South Africa that the crisis
started but he was later replaced
when they elected the present PG,
simply known as Obasanjo in South
Africa.
The monarch also revealed that
the town had witnessed a similar
bloody scenario in the year the crisis
started when four vigilante members
from the community were murdered
in cold blood which he regretted was
not even made known to the public.
“They were killed in Ukpor, a
neighbouring town and it was a man
on the palm tree that saw the killers
when they were cutting off some of
their body parts.” Oruche stated.
At this juncture, the Royal Father
called on the state and federal
governments to assist the community
in making sure that this killer squad
are arrested and brought to book,
promising that the community on
their own wouldn’t rest their oars
until the needful is done.
“We have an old culture, so our
traditional deities will bring them
out when the rituals are done by
us at the appropriate time.” Igwe
Oruche noted.
Ordinarily, the indigenes of
Amakwa community of Ozubulu
seem not to be able to vouch for
Bishop on the genuity of his business
transactions because of his long
sojourn in South Africa.
The investigation made by the
correspondent revealed that most
of them were so beclouded with
his philanthropic overtures in the
community but fail to define any
particular business that could be
attributed to his enormous wealth.
Contrary to what people alleged
that Bishop was a drug baron, Igwe
Oruche denied it and emphatically
pointed out that the community at
his watch has nothing to do with
drug business of any kind but widely
known for clothing business.
According to him, “ Alloy is my
brother, though I never knew him
until he came back from South
Africa. Before I know him, he had started helping people. Alloy is not
a bad person because he has no bad
mind against anybody.
“ Had it been that he is in Nigeria,
I should have known the kind of
business he is doing but he is in
oversea doing his business. That is
all I know about him.”
On the issue of conferring
traditional title on Bishop, He also
said that the title conferred on
Bishop as Ebubechukwuzo was
the consensus of the entire town
which had discovered his immense
contributions to the development of
the community and humanity, the
ODU led Engr. Norbert Anigbogu
thereby thought it necessary to
appreciate him by doing that.
Giving brief account on how
Bishop started from grass to grace,
a source from Bishop’s kindred
who doesn’t want his name in print
told Nigerian pilot that Alloysius
Ikeogwuonwu passed through
the rudiments of hardship before
becoming newly rich.
He said that Bishop was earlier in
life admitted in Junior Seminary but
he couldn’t continue due to paucity
of fund. He therefore abandoned
his interest of becoming a Reverend
father because of his poor parental
background.
“Due to his quest to acquire basic
education, he later got admitted
to one secondary school at Nkpor
where he finished his secondary
education. But within that period,
he had a friend whose mother
was well to do and then she was preparing to send her son to oversea.
“Bishop used the opportunity to
prevail on the woman to help him as
well because he hadn’t anybody to
assist him in taking a trip outside the
shores of Nigeria. “Eventually, he travelled to South
Africa with his friend. There and
then, he attached himself with a
business and he was doing well to
the extent that he bought V Boot
Mercedes Benz car. Unfortunately,
he lost his mother and the money he
labored for was spent during burial
rites of his mother in the past 10
years.
“After that, he went back to
South Africa and moved on with
life as he immediately engaged
into international businesses which
have taken him too far in life to be
amongst the richest persons in my
village, Amakwa.”
Nevertheless, when the
correspondent visited University
Teaching Hospital, Nnewi on
Wednesday, it was discovered that
3 patients out of the 18 have been
discharged.
Bishop’s step mother, Carol
Ikegwuonwu who was among the
18 victims receiving treatment at the
hospital told Nigerian Pilot that she
was equally expecting the doctor to
discharge her.
She sustained bullet wounds on
her abdomen and right hand.
“ I only saw a man brandishing a
gun inside the church, suddenly he
started shooting indiscriminately
without any particular direction.
In the course of finding a way to
escape, I discovered that I have
sustained gun shot wounds. That
was all I know but I thank God that
I am alive to enjoy the riches of His
glory.” Carol stated

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  • obiora

    In IGBO culture and Traditions Title has no traditional or cultural Meaning. Title is a mark of Wealth and open Heart to sacrifice or do good to people. So calling IGWE Taditioal Leader is wrong in IGBO Land.