Gunmen kill two police officers, abduct expatriate, 13 others
• Police to pay N10m over suspect’s custody death
• Letter of cult invasion scares Rivers community
Gunmen have killed two policemen and abducted an expatriate in Kogi State. Jose Machada, who worked with the Dangote Construction Company, was reportedly kidnapped by 15 gunmen as he inspected ongoing project on the Obajana-Ochokochoko Road.
Sergeant Gini John and Inspector Ezekiel Negedu had been protecting the abducted when the assailants struck. While John died on the spot, the Inspector was said to have succumbed to his injuries as he received treatment at a hospital.
Police Public Relations Officer, William Aya, confirmed the incident. He said that the hoodlums emerged from bushes nearby and opened fire on the officers.
He said security operatives were on top of the situation, adding that the Commissioner of Police, Ali Janga, had already given orders to his men to fish out the perpetrators.
He explained that Janga had visited the scene and met with the Dangote management. Meanwhile, a Kano High Court yesterday ordered the Assistant Inspector General of Police Zone 1, Kano, Kayode Aderanti, the Kano State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Rabi’u Yusuf, and investigating officer, Hamza Kakas, to pay N10 million as damages following the death in custody of a suspect, Nura Umar.
Justice Yusuf Ubale described the incident as an act of inhumanity and compelled the defendants to pay the parents of the deceased N8 million for abuse of fundamental human rights and N2 million for general and exemplary damages.
Counsel to the plaintiff, Barrister Ali Jamilu, had approached the court to enforce the right to life of the suspect who was arrested over alleged theft.
Jamilu argued that Umar was detained from January 26 to February 6, 2017, contrary to Section 35 of the Nigerian Constitution. Daredevil gunmen again abducted persons along the Elele-Port Harcourt road on the East West axis of Rivers State.
The 13 victims were said to be travelling to Owerri, the Imo State capital, when the hoodlums intercepted their vehicle and took them away to an unknown destination.
The Guardian furthermore learnt that residents of Ubimini Community in Emohua Local Council of Rivers State now live in fear of the unknown following an alleged letter by suspected cultists to invade the area.
Residents were seen fleeing the area after news of the threat filtered into the community yesterday. The group informed the residents of their plan to hoist their flag, which indicating annexation of the area.
When contacted, Police Public Relations Officer, Nnamdi Omoni, said that he had not been briefed on the development but promised to get back to the reporter when he gets details from the Divisional Police Officer in the area.
One source disclosed that the group has used similar letters prior to taking over some communities in Ikwerre Local Council.
Another source in the community who identified himself as Elezer-Okwukwu Didia, confirmed that some residents have begun fleeing the area for fear of being attacked.
Didia expressed worry that if security operatives did not intervene urgently, the situation could become worse. He called on security agencies to come to the aid of the community.
“We got a letter from a cult group that they will come and hoist their flag in our community. We don’t know what that means. We are afraid. Since then, we have been living in fear. We want adequate security attention,” he said.
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