Enugu Junior Secondary School Student Killed By Kidnappers Laid To Rest

Enugu Junior Secondary School Student Killed By Kidnappers Laid To Rest

The Junior Secondary School (JSS1) student of St. Paul’s College, Eke, in Udi Local Government Area of Enugu State, Miss Nneoma Jennifer Okeh, who was gruesomely murdered by suspected Fulani herdsmen kidnappers, has been buried amid tears.

This is even as the other three junior students who survived from the kidnappers’ bullets have remained in their hospital beds since last week Thursday when they were shot at by the assailants.

The students, after school dismissal, were returning to their homes at Egede, along Eke- Affa road when the kidnappers on the trail shot at them and on the process kidnapped other victims including the Traditional Ruler of Affa community, HRH, Igwe Marius Ahamu.

The Principal of the College, Rev Fr Frankline Eze told our correspondent that the deceased was buried last Tuesday, with the representatives of the students and the management in attendance.

Rev Fr Eze said that the two boys still in the hospital are in JS2 classes while the girl, Emmanuella, IS a JS3 student, noting that they were no longer in critical conditions.

“The three other students are recovering, even though they are still in the hospital but the dead one was buried on Tuesday. That’s the much for now. The police have not made any statement to us, but when we went for the burial of the small girl, we noticed that there were two bulldozers working there, clearing the bushes. Then we saw some local vigilantes on the road,” the priest said.

Further development showed that the traditional ruler who was kidnapped on the same day has regained freedom. One of his subjects said that there was jubilation in Affa community when the monarch was released from the custody of the kidnappers last weekend.

Sources from the Eke and Affa communities insinuated that the secondary school students were not the target of the kidnappers but were unlucky to have run into the theatre of the kidnap incident and paid dearly.

The community members lamented that kidnapping has been ongoing along the Eke-Egede-Affa road for a very long time, particularly at the lonely sections of the road. They also pointed at Eke- Oghe road, saying that both sides of the road have turned into kidnappers’ den for quiet sometime without the security agencies recording successes against the crime.

“Many kidnap victims in Udi and Ezeagu areas are kept within the same location of Eke forests until ransom is paid. Those who could not meet up with the ransom demand were usually killed after a few days. The forest spans about 15 kilometers, it is called Ofia-akwu and it has remained a death zone, with several lives lost in the past in the hands of the Fulani herdsmen who were into kidnapping.

“The security agencies know that they have been occupying that location for several years now, committing all manner of crimes. We don’t know why it is difficult to flush them out from that location. Many lives have been lost to their murderous activities on that Eke-Egede road, same as Eke-Akama Oghe- Ezeagu road,” a community leader said.

In their usual practice, the Enugu state police command and Police Public Relations Officer, Daniel Ndukwe failed to react to inquiries of such incidents.

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