Several people were injured while a pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God was shot dead by soldiers in Opuraja community in Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State on Tuesday.
The sad incident occurred when the soldiers, led by a Captain, arrived in two Hilux vans to conduct investigation in the community; however, they were mobbed by the villagers, who misconstrued their motive. As a result shots were fired into the air to scare off the surging villagers.
According to eyewitnesses: “I saw the soldiers, they came to the community, asking for the chairman of the community and vigilante leader. They told them that there was robbery incident on Warri/Sapele expressway and asked them to reveal the identity of the person who owns the farm from which the bandits collected the wood they used to barricade the road.
“They told the soldiers that none of the community people owns farm there, but the military men accused them of not doing their job effectively.
“We saw the soldiers carry them away in their Hilux van and drove to the expressway, where they tied them against their vehicles until it was 6 a.m.
“The youths mobilised and went to the scene where the community leaders were tied and when the army saw the crowd approaching, they started shooting indiscriminately.
“A group of soldiers in another Hilux van apparently heard the gunshots and rushed to the scene, that was how the pastor, who was standing by was shot and he died immediately.”
Confirming the report, the Orodje of Okpe kingdom, HRM, Mujakperuo Orhue 1, a retired army officer, expressed disappointment over the incident, saying the soldiers should not have fired at unarmed citizens.
He was said to have waded into the matter to calm frayed nerves after the fracas.
Former Minister of Information, Prof. Sam Oyovbaire, who is from the community, also confirmed that one person was killed and some persons injured.
The late pastor was married with four children. So sad.
#tags: rccg pastor killed soldiers