Gunmen on Tuesday attacked Iwollo Oghe Police Station in Ezeagu Local Government Area of Enugu State, killing four officers.
The officers died of gunshot wounds sustained in a gun duel while trying to repel the attack.
“The hoodlums, who came to the Station in their numbers, opened fire on Police Operatives on duty but were vehemently resisted, and in the ensuing gun duel, several of the assailants
The attack is coming barely one week that the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, launched Operation Restore Peace in the South East with a charge to change the current security narrative in the region.
“Unfortunately, four (4) of the Operatives, who sustained severe gunshot injuries, were later confirmed dead in the hospital, while parts of the Station was set ablaze by the assailants.”
A source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the hoodlums attacked Iwollo Police Division in their large numbers in the wee hours of the day.
The eyewitness said that the attack threw the entire Iwollo community into fear and panic throughout the night.
He said they succeeded in completely razing the buildings in the divisional station.
The source said the hoodlums might have also killed probably five police personnel that confronted them when they attacked.
It would be recalled that on April 21, gunmen shot two police operatives dead during an attack on Adani Police Station in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State.
The station was also set ablaze completely about 2:30a.m.
Confirming the attack, the Police Public Relations Officer of the state command, Daniel Ndukwe, said “the Commissioner of Police, Enugu State Command, Mohammed Ndatsu Aliyu, this morning, led members of his management team and Operational/Tactical Commanders to Iwollo Police Division for on-the-spot assessment, following attack on the division by yet-to-be identified gunmen at about 0400hrs of today 25/05/2021.
“The hoodlums, who came to the station in their numbers, opened fire on police operatives on duty, but were gallantly resisted and in the ensuing gun duel, several of the assailants escaped with bullet injuries. Unfortunately, four of the operatives, who sustained severe gunshot injuries, were later confirmed dead in the hospital, while parts of the station was set ablaze by the assailants.”
.Meanwhile Sporadic gunshots were reported on Tuesday as gunmen engage security operatives in a gun battle in the Orji area of Owerri, the Imo State capital.
Bala Elkana, the Police Public Relations Officer in Imo, confirmed the incident in a statement.
Following the shootout which caused tension in the area, the police arrested five of the suspects who were said to have attempted to stop the reconstruction of a police station in the area.
Those arrested by the security operatives include Chigaemezu Sabastine, Casmir Ibe, John Chinonso, Chukwudi Okoro, and Alozie Daberechi.
The affected police station – Orji Divisional Headquarters – is located near the Government House and a correctional facility in Owerri
According to Elkana, hoodlums in their number launched an offensive on the reconstruction site of the police station.
He noted that the divisional police headquarters was earlier burnt by hoodlums during the #EndSARS protest in October last year and a philanthropist contracted the reconstruction project.
“The hoodlums, who believed that the re-establishment of a functional police station may prevent them from carrying out their nefarious acts in Orji and environ, decided to invade the construction site.
“Before the arrival of reinforcement team, the hoodlums melted into the neighbouring township area but abandoned their operational vehicles,” the command’s spokesman said in the statement.
He disclosed that the Commissioner of Police in Imo, Abutu Yaro, personally led the enforcement team to the scene.
Elkana stated that no life was lost during the shootout and the police recovered three vehicles from the suspects.
He assured the residents in the area that a mop-up operation was ongoing to arrest more suspects and recover their firearms.
While the police stated that no death was recorded in the incident, unconfirmed reports said some persons were hit by stray bullets.