Tony Osauzo and Ighomuaye Lucky, Benin
Crack detectives from the Edo State Police Command headquarters, in Benin-City, have been dispatched to Ekpoma to uncover the mystery surrounding the recent mass killing of students of Ambrose Alli University by suspected cultists during a graduation party at the Ihunmudumun neighbourhood of the town.
Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo, who disclosed this, on Thursday, said that some arrests have been made in connection with the killings.
Kokumo, who responded to inquiries through his mobile phone said, “Yes, some arrests had been made and the suspects have been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department headquarters in Benin.”
He, however, said that he was yet to be briefed on the exact number of suspects nabbed by the police, even as he expressed his resentment over the hydra headed problem of cultism at the state owned tertiary institution.
The police boss continued, “Ambrose Alli University, I must admit is a den of cultists. The killings was as a result of a fight between rival cult groups.
“We are determined to get to the heart of the matter and check the rising wave of cultism at the school and other tertiary institutions in the state. We can’t tolerate the situation”, he said.
It was gathered that the cultists had stormed a graduation party in a commando style, brandishing sophisticated assault guns which they fired sporadically at the dancing students.
About 12 people were reportedly killed in the shooting that lasted few minutes.
But Kokumo said five persons were killed during the bloody shootout, adding that no matter the casualty figure it was one killing too many which the police could no longer tolerate.
Spokesman of the state Police Command, DSP Chidi Nwabuzor, told journalists that a locally made gun and some rounds of ammunition have been recovered from the suspects.
He, however, declined to reveal the exact number of suspects arrested so far, insisting that a disclosure will jeopardise ongoing investigations into the brutal killings.
Nwabuzor explained that the policemen drafted to Ekpoma to ensure the safety of lives and properties of both the students and locals, were presently combing every nook and cranny of the town in a determined bid to ensure that the blood-thirsty killers were arrested and brought to justice.
“Investigations are ongoing. Some arrests have been made but disclosing the number will jeopardise investigations.
“A locally made gun and ammunition have been recovered. We will come out with a detailed report at the end of investigations. It will be premature at the moment to disclose facts”, he said.