Youths bury elderly man alive after accusing him of killing his son, daughter-in-law and 2-week-old grandchild with ‘lightning strike’ in Benue community

Angry youths in Kyurav, Shangev-Tiev in Konshisha local Government area of Benue State have buried a man alive, claiming he was ‘behind the lightning strike’ that killed one Henry Ihwakaa, his wife and their two-week-old child.


It was gathered that a lightning strike killed the couple and their baby about three days ago when it was raining. 


Angered by the development, the youths accused Ihwakaa, the father of Henry, of bewitching people with thunder storms in the area any time it rains.


The youths mobilized and attacked Ihwakaa. They later dug a shallow grave and buried him alive.


An eyewitness and elder in the community, Engr Baba Agan, said the matter was reported to the police in Konshisha local government and the Divisional Police Officer (DPO), mobilised his men to the scene of the incident.


However, when the police team arrived, the man had already died in the grave and his body exhumed.


Spokesman of the State Police Command, SP Catherine Anene, who confirmed the incident on Monday, April 24, 2023, said two suspects have been arrested and investigation is ongoing. 


“I heard it was one person that was buried alive. They said the deceased is a young man who has a wife and a child. Lightning killed three of them. Maybe they were in the same room when the lightning came,” the PPRO stated.  


“So the youths now said it was the elders that were bewitching people. That his father bewitched him with lightning. So they carried him and buried him alive as a witch,” 


The spokesperson said the youths put up a serious fight with the police to prevent their arrest.


Anene, who recalled that authorities during a weather forecast, had said that there would be a lot of thunderstorms this rainy season, noted that most people don’t listen to the news while some others are still illiterate and don’t understand science or the way things work.  


The PPRO, who described the act as barbaric, cautioned members of the public against jungle justice and urged them to always report any case to the police instead of taking laws into their own hands. 


“We cannot continue to be living like animals, a barbaric way of life” she added.


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