- As hoodlums kill 2 officers, injure one
Ahead of today’s re-run elections in Rivers State, security agencies yesterday mopped up arms and flushed out criminal elements in likely flash points in the state.
Already, combined forces of the Nigerian Police, Joint Task Force and Nigerian Army on Wednesday, stormed Usokun in Degema local government area and Buguma, headquarters of Asari Toru local government area to recover some arms.
The operatives also engaged hoodlums at the notorious Abuja Estate, killing about 8 suspected criminals in an operation that lasted over four hours on Wednesday.
Nigerian Pilot Saturday gathered that at Usokun and Buguma, the combined forces stormed the areas and six other locations believed to be stronghold of the caretaker committee chairman of Asari-Toru local government area, Mr Sobomabo Jack-Rich a.k.a. Egberipapa.
A source in the area, who spoke under condition of anonymity, said the CTC chairman escaped arrest, while over 20 of his supporters were arrested by men of the state Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS.
The source further told this reporter that one of the SARS officers was injured during the operation, adding that some Permanent Voters Card, PVCs, believed to have been snatched during the 2015 general elections and arms were recovered.
But in a swift reaction, Jack-Rich denied that arms were recovered at his residence. Jack-Rich, who spoke through his counsel, Mr Tubotamuno Dick, said the operation was a move to kill the CTC boss. He accused a former local government chairman in the area, Mr Ojukaye Flag-Amachree, of leading the operation.
But the media aide to Flag-Amachree, Asin Dateme, denied the allegation, saying both members of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, and All Progressives Congress, APC, suspected to have arms were all raided.
Police Public Relations Officer in the State, DSP Ahmad Muhammad, in a chat with newsmen said the Police would comment on the issue at the appropriate time. He also confirmed that one Inspector and one officer of the rank and file on bank guard duty were killed at Buguma on Wednesday, but declined to give further details.