The 82 Division of the Nigerian Army has detained one Lance Cpl. Ajayi Johnson suspected to have killed a commercial cyclist at Umuokereke Ngwa in Abia State.
Umuokereke Ngwa is in the Obingwa Local Government Area of Abia.
In a statement on Saturday in Enugu State, the Deputy Director of Army Public Relations in the division, Col. Aliyu Yusuf, said the army had commenced investigations on the killing.
On August 7, Johnson reportedly shot commercial motorcyclist Chimaobi Nwaogu at point-blank range, at a military checkpoint at Ohanze, Obingwa local government area of the state. killing him on the spot.
Yusuf said that Johnson was on illegal duty at the time of the incident and that he absconded after the killing.
A witness had said Nwogu was killed because he refused to give N100 to somebody allegedly stationed to collect tips on behalf of soldiers.
“Investigation on the incident revealed that Johnson was one of the soldiers deployed for security duties at Forward Operations Base in Ohanze but absconded from his duty post to an unknown destination.
“He was reported to have been involved in a scuffle that led to the shooting and killing of Nwaogu.”
Yusuf said that Johnson been arrested, adding that disciplinary procedures in line with extant military laws had commenced.
“If found culpable, he will be dismissed and handed over to the civil police for prosecution.
“The Nigerian Army deeply regrets this unfortunate incident and prays for the repose of the soul of the deceased.
“May the Almighty God strengthen the family of the deceased, his loved ones and the entire residents of Abia State for this irreparable loss,” Yusuf said.
Extortion by security operatives has become a custom on Nigerian roads, with the military authorities doing nothing to end it.