Panic As Policeman Opens Fire At Ohanaeze NEC Meeting In Enugu
Leaders of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the apex socio-political body of the Igbos, narrowly escaped death on Friday when a trigger happy policeman opened fire at the National Secretariat of the organisation in Enugu.
Our correspondent learnt that the incident was caused by leadership tussle between rival factions of the Ohanaeze Youth Council.
The President General of the organisation, Chief Gary Igariwey and other Ohanaeze leaders, including the National Secretary, Dr Joe Nwaorgu, were at the secretariat for a National Executive Committee meeting of the body when the incident occurred.
Leaders of the youth wing were also at the meeting.
However, trouble started when the National Publicity Secretary of the youth wing, Obinna Adibe, who belonged to the Arthur Okafor faction, came with some plain clothes policemen from the Enugu Area Command to arrest one of the youth leaders, Alex Okemiri.
Adibe had, in a petition to the Enugu Area Command, accused Okemiri, who belonged to the faction of the National President, Mazi Ikechukwu Isiguzoro, of impersonating him in text messages he circulated to summon a meeting.
As the policemen were dragging Okemiri into a waiting vehicle, some officials of Ohanaeze Ndigbo moved to intervene.
Plea by the Ohanaeze officials fell on deaf ears, as the policemen insisted on taking Okemiri away.
But the matter took a sinister turn when a policeman attached to one of the Ohanaeze officials shut at the gates of the secretariat, raised his rifle and fired into the air.
The sound of the gunshot sent the Ohanaeze leaders scampering for safety.
Afterwards, Igariwey moved to broker peace between the warring factions of the youth wing.
The policemen eventually left without Okemiri, after Igariwey pleaded with Adibe to allow the Ohanaeze leadership to resolve the crisis.
However, it was gathered that the policeman that released the bullet was reprimanded.
The meeting, which was ongoing as of the time of filing this report, was expected to deliberate on the report of a panel set up by the Ohanaeze leadership to resolve the crisis in the youth wing of the organisation.
Earlier, before the commencement of the meeting, members of the Okafor faction had attempted to stop the National President of the Ohanaeze Youth Council, Mazi Isiguzoro, from entering the venue.
When contacted, the spokesman, Enugu State Police Command, Mr. Ebere Amaraizu, said the incident was yet to be reported.
He promised to get back to our correspondent.