“One policeman was fatally injured and was rushed to the hospital alongside two civilians, a woman and a boy, were confirmed dead at the hospital.”
Christopher Oji, Rose Ejembi, Makurdi and Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti
At least four persons, including a policeman, were feared killed while many others were injured yesterday at Tse-Ujondo, Mechanic site and Tse-Uvia all in Zaki Biam town in Ukum Local Government Area of Benue State. Daily Sun gathered from sources in the affected areas that the attackers also abducted a mobile policeman on special duty in the area and burnt down the police checkpoint near the Zaki Biam Mechanic village.
Similarly, pandemonium broke out in Ekiti on Wednesday night as gunmen invaded the home of the treasurer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State, Moses Adeoye, and shot him dead. He was killed while eating at his residence in Otun-Ekiti, a town in Moba Local Government Area of the state.
In the same vein, two suspected leaders of notorious cult groups, Ibrahim, aka Small Japron, and Solo, were yesterday murdered during a political rally at Shomolu, Lagos State. The alleged organizer of the rally, Ademorin Kuye, has been invited by the police for organising the event without approval.
According to sources, the Benue mayhem, which started around 10am yesterday, was carried out by gang members of a notorious criminal, Terwase Akwaza, popularly known as Gana. The gunmen known as Gana Boys were said to have shot sporadically everywhere they went, leaving people, especially traders and school children, scampering for safety.
It was also gathered that the incident forced traders to close their shops while residents ran into the bush to avoid being killed. A close aide to the Ukum LGA chairman said they were yet to ascertain the cause of the attack.
“We cannot tell the exact number of casualty now because people ran away from the attack point and security operatives who had gone to maintain peace in the area are yet to return,” he said.
When contacted, the Benue State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Moses Yamu, confirmed the report. He said the criminals were escaping from the ongoing joint operation of the Military Spike, Operation While Stroke (OPWS), which was targeted at their enclave.
“The Benue State Police Command wishes to report that at about 1100 hrs of today, information was received that some armed Shiite militia aka ‘Ghana Boys’ dressed in PMF and Special Forces uniforms were approaching Zaki Biam town through bush paths, riding on Bajaj motorcycles. It is important to note that their movement was in a bid to escape the ongoing joint operation tagged Whirl Stroke targeted at their enclaves which forced them out, to possibly seek refuge in the town.
“Regrettably, one policeman who was fatally injured and his rifle taken away by the militia was rushed to the hospital alongside two civilians, a woman and a boy, were confirmed dead at the hospital.”
The PPRO disclosed further that three other persons who sustained injuries were receiving treatment at Light of Grace Hospital, Zaki Biam.
Confirming the killing of Adeoye, the Police Public Relations Officer in Ekiti, Caleb Ikechukwu, said the police had launched investigation into the case. He said: “The case has already been reported with the police and our men have swung into action. We have started our investigation to make sure the perpetrators are arrested.”
The state’s Public Relations Officer of the APC, Ade Ajayi, described Adeoye’s death as sad. Meanwhile, Governor Kayode Fayemi has directed security agencies in the state to fish out the killers of Adeoye. In a statement by Yinka Oyebode, his Chief Press Secretary, Fayemi “vowed to get to the root of the matter, stressing that anyone found to be connected in one way or the other with the killing would be dealt with.”
Meanwhile, Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Imohimi Edgal, has, therefore, banned political rallies until the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) gives the go ahead for that. He warned that henceforth any politician that organises political rally before INEC gives the go ahead would be made to face the law. The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, CSP Chike Oti, said: “The deceased persons, who were involved in several cult clashes, were on the wanted list of the police for leading several cult fights in the Shomolu, Bariga, Fadeyi and Ojuelegba areas of the state. They were trailed to the gathering by a rival cult group, who invaded the arena and began to attack people.
“The fight was, however, brought to an end by the police, who arrived quickly at the scene and made some arrests.
“Meanwhile, 21 persons have so far been arrested in connection with the case and are being interrogated by homicide detectives attached to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID) Panti, Yaba. Also invited to Panti is the politician, Ademorin Kuye.
“CP Edgal has ordered a manhunt for the perpetrators of the dastardly act, vowing that the command would leave no stone unturned in ensuring that the perpetrators of the crime are prosecuted.
“He once again requests politicians to inform the police before gathering in public places. He noted that until INEC gives the go ahead, political campaign at this time is illegal and those in breach of the electoral law will be made to face the full wrath of the law.”