From Geoffrey Anyanwu, Enugu and Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Gunmen, yesterday, went on rampage in Enugu, the State capital city, killing three policemen and abducting three civilians including a woman.
The incident, which took place near Cashew Bus Stop, close to Timber Junction, Loma Linda Estate Independent Layout, about noon, saw the gunmen attacking and killing the policemen at a checkpoint.
Confirming the incident at press time, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Daniel Ndukwe, disclosed that the police have commenced a manhunt of the gunmen.
He said: “Information surrounding the incident is still sketchy. Meanwhile, a manhunt of the hoodlums has been initiated. Further development will be communicated.”
However, Daily Sun gathered that the policemen were on stop and search when the gunmen who had allegedly kidnapped a man very close to Treasure Point, along Ugwuaji Road, stormed the checkpoint and opened fire, killing the three cops at the spot.
In the cause of the heavy shooting, a tricycle (Keke) rider was said to have sustained gunshot wounds, while some other people sustained varying degrees of injuries as they tried to escape from the scene.
Sources said the hoodlums also kidnapped a woman and her driver who ran into them as they escaped.
A source told Daily Sun that “the gunmen kidnapped a man around that covert where they sell ties and it seems their gunshots attracted the police nearby and they tried to block them.
“We heard serious gunshots and believed they must have engaged the police in a shootout which claimed the lives of three policemen. Their lifeless bodies were just there, one was found inside the gutter.”
Also, seven people were feared dead as armed robbers attacked a bullion van at Idi-Ape, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
Daily Sun learnt that the incident occurred around 1:30pm, yesterday, and that three policemen and four civilians died in the attack.
The armed robbers were said to have driven in an unmarked Toyota Sienna and were in police uniform. The robbery operation took place very close to the Agodi Area Command of the Nigeria Police Force. There are up to six commercial banks within the vicinity.
The armed robbers, according to eyewitnesses, were three in number and they carried sophisticated weapons. The seven persons were said to have lost their lives to volleys of gunfire.
But the armed robbers were not successful in the operation as they could not hijack the bullion van before they fled. But the impacts of the gunshots were evident on the bullion van.
A visit to the scene revealed that people in the buildings, including law offices, banks and shops, scampered for safety and many of them prostrated on the floor to ensure that the bullets did not get to them when staccato of gunfire rented the atmosphere of Idi Ape, which is the place where daredevil armed robbers robbed many banks and killed many people in 2008.
The attacked bullion van has been towed to an undisclosed location by security men from Idi-Ape.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police in the state, Mrs. Ngozi Onadeko, who visited the scene, said two policemen were shot, but did not confirm the death of anybody.
She said one of the policemen also killed one of the armed robbers.
Onadeko said security agencies, including Amotekun Corps, the police, and the joint security task force of the state, Operation Burst, “are working hand-in-hand to get the people involved. All the exit points out of Ibadan, even out of Oyo State are under lockdown. You can see security agencies and everybody on the road to ensure that we get to the root of what happened today to arrest the culprits.”