Cultists, Vigilante Group Clash Claims Eight Lives, As Residents Flee

Over eight persons have been confirmed dead in Okpara community, Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State following a clash between members o

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Over eight persons have been confirmed dead in Okpara community, Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State following a clash between members of the vigilante group and a cult group identified as Dominion Confraternity.

Daily Independent reliably gathered that the clash started after an investigation into a robbery incident by the vigilante pointed in the direction of some members of the Dominion confraternity who were subsequently arrested and handed over to the police.

A source who spoke under anonymity revealed that members of the cult having confirmed the involvement of the vigilante group in the arrest of their members went after the leader of the vigilante on his farmland.

Infuriated that their target was nowhere to be found, the cult members were said to have in annoyance shot dead a 9-year-old boy they sighted on the farmland.

The source added that luck, however, ran against them as a palm wine tapper perching on a tree, that witnessed the gruesome murder of the innocent young boy, alerted the vigilante leader who rushed to the farm and shot one of the cultists’ dead in retaliation, while others escaped.

According to the source, “After the incident on the farm, the vigilante team leader carried the corpses to the village and this led to a sporadic shooting that lasted for four days resulting in the death of eight people just as a number of other residents of the community suffered serious injuries.

According to the source, members of the vigilante group have vowed to comb the community and fish out the culprits, saying that the move had forced many residents of the community to abandon their homes for fear of being cut in the crossfire.

“While there were unconfirmed reports that some of the cultists had fled the community, another source revealed that the group is perfecting a mission attack on the vigilante group for reprisal attacks and death of their members”.

When contacted, the President General of Okpara Patriotic Union (OPU), Chief Akatugba, said denied knowledge of the number of causalities while the vigilante Chairman, Mr. Onodje Okpubeku confirmed the incident, saying that the police and soldiers were helpful in curtailing the situation.

All attempt to reach the Delta State Police Public Relations Officer for confirmation failed as his phone could not be reached for comment

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