Three chiefs and about 20 women have been set ablaze by the youths of Oku community, Boki Local Government Area, Cross River State over allegations of witchcraft.
Among the victims burnt were, Chief Benard Kekong who was former manager, Boki Oil Palm Estate in Borum, who died an hour after he was set ablaze alongside Edward Kekong, John Otu and other women.
A source in the community shared an insight on the situation adding that the victims were allegedly accused by an aide to Governor Ben Ayade’s political appointee.
“The elderly victims accused of being witches and wizards, were brought out from their homes and burned. Some have died, while others still alive are writhing in pains.
“Those in pains could not get medical treatment anywhere, not even in Okundi, as the dreaded political appointee warned whoever treated those suffering from burns would suffer the same fate” a source stated.
“The police in Okundi also could not do anything about the situation because the troublesome political appointee warned them to stay away from Oku.
“Villagers have fled to neighboring communities on self-exile to avoid being attacked by the man and his boys. Even the clan head, Bernard Nku is also on the run” the source further said.
In a similar reaction, the Permanent Secretary, Office of the State Security Adviser, Sir Alfred Mboto, said, “I have been able to reach my SSA (State Security Adviser, Central) and my SSA has been able to make contact there.
“He will give me a full briefing. But what they said was that some youths of the village decided to take on elders claiming that those elders are witches and wizards and one of the youths was using a mirror to show them who to attack.
“But it is true that some properties have been destroyed. I want to get the raw facts because some people are even telling me that some people have been killed. We have to send our security informants to get the right information.
“However, if that happened, I have set in motion plans to arrest those who carried out the act, alongside the person who directed them to do so.”