From Geoffrey Anyanwu (Enugu) and Molly Kilete (Abuaja
Four persons, including a soldier, died in a clash between Nigerian Army troops engaged in the ongoing Golden Dawn military exercise and gunmen in Anambra State.
The other three dead persons were said to be among the gunmen that had attacked policemen at a checkpoint at Okija along Onitsha-Owerri expressway on Thursday, October 7 before the troops attached to Sector 5 of Exercise Golden Dawn stormed the scene and neutralized three of the gunmen.
Confirming the incident in a statement, the Director Army Public Relations, Brig. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, said the gallant troops on getting there engaged and overwhelmed the gunmen with superior firepower, forcing them to flee the scene.
His words: “Troops however gave them a hot pursuit, and engaged the gunmen in a gun duel. Three of gunmen, who drove in two vehicles (a Hilux and Hummer bus), eventually succumbed to troops’ effective firepower while others fled with gunshot wounds.”
Nwachukwu said the troops recovered one vehicle and two motorcycles. He said troops were conducting further exploitation of the general area for the fleeing terrorists, just as he confirmed the loss of one soldier in the encounter.
He said, “Unfortunately, a soldier paid the supreme price, in the line of duty, for his country. The Chief of Army Staff commends the troops for the feat and urges them to sustain the momentum against all criminal elements operating in the region.”