The traditional ruler of Mgbee Community in Orlu LGA of Imo State, Eze Brendan Ibekwe has reportedly been gruesomely murdered by unknown assailants.
Ibekwe’s corpse was discovered a little distance from his house, lying next to his motorcycle, with his mobile phone and traditional beads allegedly taken away by his assailants.
There are indications that the killing of the monarch may not be unconnected to the recent All Progressive Congress (APC) LG primaries
According to community sources, the community had previously agreed that anytime there would be council elections, one Mr John Ijeoma would represent them due to his contributions to community development and the people of the community were said to have agreed to their decision.
True to their resolve, the entire community including the slain Eze Ibekwe had thrown their weight behind Mr Ijeoma when the state government announced plans to conduct local government elections.
The community leaders also were said to have pleaded with Ijeoma’s challenger, one Emeka Okoronkwo alias Taribo to abide by the resolve of the community.
But, rather than listen to the counsel of the community leaders, Okoronkwo was said to have rejected the stand of his community and was said to have openly threatened to kill the monarch and raze down his house for his involvement in the support of Ijeoma.
It was gathered that when Okoronkwo’s threats and harassment became too worrisome, the monarch in company of elders of the community decided to go to Orlu Police Area Command to report the matter. Soon after, Mr Okoronkwo was arrested but released immediately the monarch and his team left the police station.
“All these happened on Wednesday 20 June 2018 and by Thursday morning, the 21st of June, the corpse of the monarch was discovered about a short distance from his house”, the source added.
According to village sources, Eze Ibekwe had left his house early in the morning of Thursday on his motorcycle to attend to some issues but not long after his corpse was found lying face down near his bike not too far away from his house.
An elder in the community, Mr Eusebius Anyama expressed shock over the dastardly murder of Ibekwe recalling concerted efforts made to ensure the councillorship problem was resolved amicably.
Contacted the state police spokesman, Andrew Enwerem, said he has not yet received any brief on the death of the monarch.