This is even as reports from the area said that residents couldn’t sleep last (Tuesday) night as policemen invaded the area at night to conduct a massive arrest of residents.
It was gathered that the massive arrest which was ongoing at the time of filing the report has gone beyond the location at which the incident happened.
Our correspondent also recalled that a similar incident happened on October 1, 2019 where some police officers from the same Ndiegoro Police Division who had gone to Oko Jumbo area in Aba South, leading the police team to burn houses and displaying innocent victims who are yet to be compensated as at the time of filing the report.
It was gathered that the gunmen escaped with the AK47 and bullet cache belonging to the said deceased police officer.
Information has it that the incident which happened Tuesday afternoon forced many traders and residents around the popular Iheorji Market off Ohanku to abandon their wares and residents over possible police arrest.
Sources within the location of the incident alleged that the police offices had left a drug bunk in the area where they had reportedly gone to collect their “royalty” when the gunmen said to be operating in a motor tricycle stormed in the area and engaged them in a gun duel, sending passerby, market women and other road users to scamper for safety.
Speaking of the incident, a resident of the area said “It was on Tuesday as I was coming back from Ohanku by Ngwa road to see my visitor off, that we started hearing gunshots and I never knew that it was even towards the direction that we are going.
“A lot of people were running to our side while the keke that was carrying me was heading towards Umunkama junction. Those who were running towards us asked us to go back immediately.
“At that moment, other passengers in our keke and other ones ahead of us jumped out and started looking for where they could hide for safety.
“It was when we later got to the Iheorji Market that we learnt that a policeman was killed and another two persons who could not be identified were killed in the process.
“While some where saying that the two civilians killed were members of the gunmen, others claimed that they were passersby who were hit by stray bullet and died in the process as they reportedly bled to death without help coming their way.
“It is not a hidden thing. Police and other security operatives come to the area to collect royalty. They didn’t know that they were being ambushed, I don’t think that it was a coincidence. The boys may have monitored them overtime before confronting the police officers, knowing the dangers that they would be facing.”
In a telephone interview, the Abia State Command Police Public Relations Officer, Geoffrey Ogbonna alleged that the attackers were suspected to be IPOB/ESN members.
Ogbonna who debunked the police officers going to the said drug bunk, stated that the officers were in the area for routine patrol and surveillance.
The PPRO who confirmed the death of the police inspector, added that the two persons that died were members of the group.
He gave the number of the missing rifle as “Breech no 552511308, adding that their corpses have been deposited at the morgue.
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The Abia Police Command PPRO who pleaded with residents of the state to report cases of gunshot wounds in their area, stated that the police had begun processes that would lead to the recovering of the missing rifle and to possible arrest of the fleeing suspects/members of the gang.