Okoyo village in Ukanafun Local Government Area (LGA) of Akwa Ibom State was, at the weekend, thrown into confusion following the killing of two persons by suspected members of Iceland, a cult group.
The Guardian learnt that the killing was not unconnected with resurgence of cult activities in the neighbouring council area of Etim Ekpo.
A source from Ukanafun LGA said the two persons were indigenes of the village.
According to the source, they met their untimely death near Akpan Ido compound about 4:00 a.m. while returning from a night prayer organised by New Church in Ikot Ese community.
The source identified the victims as Nkereuwem Ime Udo Ekere and Effioyo Emmanuel.
He said: “The people went for a night crusade at the New Church in Ikot Ese village. They own a gospel band that some churches and event planners hire for their occasions.
“After the prayer session, they left the church as early as 4:00a.m. on a motorcycle heading towards Okoyo village in Ukanafun Local Government Area, but were ambushed a few metres from the church near Enen Akpan Ido (Akpan Ido compound) and shot dead.
“The motorcycle rider died instantly, while the passenger, who fled with bullet wounds, later collapsed and died.
“Many people have lost their lives trying to navigate the road from Ikot Ese to connect the Urua Obo Inyang market axis that leads to Okoyo and other areas in the neighbouring Ukanafun Local Government Area.
“It is suspected that it is the continuation of the cult war between the Icelanders (the Red) and the Debam (the White) because this supremacy war has been ongoing in the last couple of months and, if you check, the assailant did not steal the motorcycle or any other valuable from them.”
The latest killings brought the number of cult-related killings to four in Etim Ekpo LGA, as two were earlier killed at Obong Ntak and Udianga Enem communities recently.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Odiko Macdon, said the matter was yet to be reported to the police, adding that operatives would commence investigation into the incident.
He said: “We don’t have an official report on this yet. We will commence investigation. As we speak, the CP is on a familiarisation tour of Etim Ekpo council area and has not been told of the incident.”
SIMILARLY, a welder, identified as Ifeanyi was shot dead by suspected cultists at Shekinah Glory street junction in Ogwashi-Uku, Anoisha South Council of Delta State.
The 30 year-old welder was reportedly killed by rival cultists while working at his workshop on Saturday, but others including his apprentice scampered to safety.
Sources alleged that the deceased was member of Bagger and was attacked by a rival cult group in retaliation of murder of one of their members in an Ogwashi-Uku hotel.
The deceased , a source said was allegedly stabbed on his neck some days ago.
The Guardian gathered that he was shot severally before the bullets could penetrate him, and died on the spot.
It was further gathered the deceased, at first, resisted his attackers, stabbed one of them with a chisel before he was gunned down.
Delta State Police spokesman, Bright Edafe, confirmed the killing but did not give details.