10 Islamic fundamentalists, one soldier killed in Okene
A RAID on the base of some Islamic fundamentalists in Okene town in Kogi State has led to the death of about 10 members of an Islamic sect and a soldier.
The pandemonium and apprehension generated by the invasion in the commercial nerve centre of the state caused schools, shops, banks and other public offices to close down for the entire day.
Ten of the sect members who engaged the army in a gun duel fell to the superior fire-power of the army while an army officer lost his life in the battle.
The Guardian investigations revealed that the men of the Army had invaded a mosque located in the heart of Okene following reports on the activities of the sect.
Sources said the invasion of the area was as a result of the recent onslaught on the state headquarters of the Department of State Security (DSS) by people suspected to be members of the sect.
Gunshot wounds on some of the persons that carried out the attack gave them away, as it became a link with which security agencies stumbled on their hideout.
The effort yielded positive result as one the suspected member of the notorious sect was nabbed after he was identified as a teacher in one of the private schools in Okene.
The arrested member led the soldiers to the hideout of other members that were receiving treatment over their gunshot wounds.
It was further gathered that after the arrest of the member where he was receiving treatment, he confessed to being a member of the notorious group following which he took them to their hideout around 1:00am where dangerous weapons including AK 47 rifles were recovered.
An eyewitness told The Guardian that the mosque used by the sect in the midnight was deserted yesterday, as they sensed the presence of the Military. The military men, however, laid ambush for them till about 5:00am.
It was revealed that the members of the sect, who were aware of the ambush, reinforced and launched an attack on the men of the army, who immediately returned with fire.
The military officers, who were still engaged in the operation as at press time, had brought down the mosque which was being used by the members of the sect.
The Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Command, Emmanuel Ojukwu, confirmed the incident but quickly added that the Command could not speak on the development as it was a military operation.
He, however, said the operation was still ongoing, adding that the military would be in the best position to give detailed information about the operation.