From Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
A cow butcher has reportedly gone missing and others injured following an attack by thugs at the Ugo-Gbuzue Ochakee Slaughter Market in Osile Ogbunike in Oyi local government area in Anambra state. Cash and meat were reportedly carted away.
The hoodlums who allegedly came from neighbouring Ezi Nkwelle village, numbering about 50 in all, had stormed the market as early as 7 am on Wednesday wielding weapons, shooting sporadically and chasing butchers and other traders out of the area.
The President General of Osile Ogbunike community, Sir Donatus Mbanefo flanked by his executive members and Chairman of the market Mr Ejike James Ikechukwu, briefing newsmen, alleged that the thugs injured some people, caused a lot of damage and carted away cash.
They stated that after the attack the community made a headcount and found out that one of the cow sellers had gone missing.
‘They came and started shooting up, saying that everybody should leave the market that the land belongs to Ezi Nkwelle. So, the butchers and other traders started running helter-shelter, they continued looting and destroying sheds. Some people received bottle and machete cuts while others were injured while running into the bush,’ Mbanefo said.
‘We lost many things like over N30 million both cash and property destroyed. One surprising thing was that some armed policemen with their vehicles were watching the boys while they carried out their wicked activities.
‘We want the police authority to investigate the invasion and look for the missing person. We don’t know why they should come and tell us to leave where we have been doing business for over five years which was given to us by Osile Ogbunike.’
Efforts to reach the police spokesman in the state, Mr Haruna Mohammed, proved unsuccessful with calls to him unanswered as at press time.