Reuben Izu, the elder brother of late Joseph Izu, who was killed by operatives of the Joint Military Task Force, said on Thursday that his brother was not a cultist.
Joseph was killed during a raid by the JTF in Okaki community on Sunday after he allegedly identified himself as a player with the Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) of Ibadan, Oyo State.
The Nigerian Army had claimed that the late footballer was shot near a cultists’ shrine in Okaki.
But speaking on Thursday, Reuben said the claim of the military that his younger brother was found near a shrine was a lie.
Reuben explained that the shrine in Okaki was a traditional shrine, maintaining that the community had no issue of cult clashes.
“The claim by the military is a lie. It is sad that my innocent brother was shot and the military authorities decided to cover it up.
“I think the army should locate the actual persons responsible for the killing instead of covering up for its men.
“Joseph brought out his identity card, but they still killed him. Is that how to treat even a criminal?
“There is no cultists’ shrine in Okaki; the only shrine there is a traditional shrine and it is far from where my brother was killed,” Reuben added.
He also lamented that the Rivers State Government had yet to contact the family since the incident occurred.
Reuben urged the state Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, to intervene in the matter and ensured that Izu family got justice.
He said, “Nobody has contacted the family. We beg the government to come to our aid to help us get justice.