A 45-year-old man, identified as Michael Ugwuanyi, on Sunday, went berserk in Enugu and clubbed his parents to death with a pestle, neighbours have said.
The incident happened in Mkporogwu, Iheakpu Awka, in Igbo-Eze South local government of Enugu State.
It was gathered that the mother of the suspect, Florence Ugwuanyi, was pounding cassava meal in the kitchen when the suspect snatched the pestle from her and smashed her head.
He them proceeded to attack and smash his father, Julius Ugwuanyi’s head with the same pestle.
After killing his parents, the suspect, covered their heads with clothes.
He them called his older brother with his deceased mother’s phone and alleged that they ate beans and were reacting adversely to it.
A member of the community, Titus Ugwuoke, was called by the son, Pius Ugwuanyi, on hearing about his parents around 4 am on Sunday.
Pius Ugwuanyi pleaded with Mr Ugwuoke to rush to their father’s house with his wife, who is a nurse, to ascertain what was happening and possibly administer first aid treatment to his parents.
On getting to the family of the victims with his wife, Mr Ugwuoke said they met the suspect, who informed them that his parents have gone to the hospital for treatment. The couple returned to their home on hearing this.
But when they got home, Mr Ugwoke got another call again from Mr Ugwuanyi.
According to Mr Ugwoke, the first son told him that the suspect asked him to return home from Abuja immediately because their parents’ health was in a critical condition.
On hearing this, Mr Ugwuoke said, he returned to the family and conducted a thorough search in their rooms but could not find anything.
“I decided to arrest him with the Neighbourhood Watch personnel since he refused to disclose the name of the hospital where his parents went for treatment. It was in the midst of this apprehension and confusion that Daniel, who is a younger brother to the late Julius, went to the kitchen and raised the alarm.”
“On rushing there, we discovered the lifeless bodies of the suspect’s parents covered with clothes. I uncovered the clothes and what I saw was beyond my explanation, it was gory, to say the least. Their brain cells were splashed on the floor,” Mr Ugwuoke said.
The police spokesperson in the state, Daniel Ndukwe, confirmed the incident.
“The suspect, Michael Ugwuanyi, has been arrested and the Commissioner of Police has directed that the case be transferred to State Criminal Investigation Department for further investigation and prosecution,” he said.
The oldest son of the deceased, Monday, said that the suspect has been a thorn in the flesh of the family for a long time.
According him, the suspect refused to join him in Abuja where he runs a business.
The brother said the family tried to set up a business for the suspect several times but he ran down the businesses and returned home on each occasion.
He admitted that his brother had some mental health challenges in the past.
“My brother has cost me money. In 2008, I went to Yola because I got a distress call that he locked himself in a room for seven days. The neighbours informed me that he stopped trading for that period of time. They told me that he would always answer them when they knocked on his door but would not open it despite their persuasions. They suspected he was mentally ill.
“When I got there, I called him and he queried what I came there to do. I persuaded him to open the door and when he did, he asked me why I was coming to look for him after abandoning him to suffer all these years. He demanded that I give him money for feeding, which I did.
“A friend who went with me, after close observation, told me he needed psychiatric attention. I mobilised policemen who went with me to arrest him. We took him to a psychiatric home, that was where he manifested a bit of insanity. He told me how his pastor wanted to kill him. He also told me that I took him there so that he would be killed, but after treatment, he became stable. We were there for seven days.
“I packed his belongings and returned home with him. We took him to an adoration ground at Umuida in Igbo-Eze North local government area of Enugu State, where he became well before returning to the village with us,” he explained.
Another member of the community, Christopher Odo, regretted the death of the father, whom he noted was the eldest man in their clan before his death.
He described him as a passionate farmer and a peace builder who motivated the community to embrace agriculture.