A 45-year-old man identified as Patrick Archibong has killed his four children and committed suicide in Eleme, Rivers State.
Archibong, a resident of Iyamala community is said to have had a scuffle with his wife before the unfortunate incident.
According to eyewitnesses, Archibong had lived with his wife, Favour, for years but recently they had a misunderstanding. Their landlord, Onuoha Gomba, in an interview with Channels Television said before the incident, he had spoken to Archibong and urged him to be calm.
“There was no peace between the wife and the man, I have been talking to him to be calm, I didn’t know he had the mind to do evil,” he said.
Another resident narrated that the couple had a misunderstanding. He added that the last fight between the couple occurred around 2:00 am after which the wife fled the house, leaving Archibong and the kids.
The eyewitness claimed that Archibong killed his four children by poisoning them before committing suicide.
“He killed the four children by giving them poison, the food he gave them to eat (bread and tea) he poisoned it. After eating the food, the children died.
“When he found out that the children (three girls and a boy) had died, he packed all the property in the house, put it on fire, went to a place close to the toilet and hanged himself,” he said.
The police have since taken the bodies of the victims to the mortuary. The Police spokesperson, Nnamdi Omoni, said the case is still being investigated.
“It is a case of murder; unfortunately the man who committed the act has also hanged himself, which means he has paid the ultimate price for his offence.
“But that is not the end of it; we still have to go further as security agents, by recording statements from witnesses who were there, so that with what they tell us we can build on the case properly.
“There are insinuations that the incident could have been stage-managed, these are facts that we are going to investigate so that at the end of the day we would now really know what happened.