Emerging report indicates that about 5 Soldiers and 4 members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, have been feared dead, after a clash in Oyigbo, and other parts of Rivers State.
This brings to 7, the number of IPOB members who have reportedly died during the EndSARS and Police brutality protests in the State.
The IPOB members were said to have engaged in a shoot-out with a joint security team comprising Soldiers and Police deployed to quell their activities in Oyigbo, Rumuokwurusi, and other flashpoints areas in the State.
The Governor of the State, Nyesom Wike, in a State broadcast on Friday, had condemned the activities of IPOB, despite the 24-hour curfew imposed on the Oyigbo Council Area.
Governor Wike stated: “We were all witnesses to yet another orgy of violence and destruction inflicted by IPOB, at Oyigbo Local Government Area, and some parts of Port Harcourt City Local Government Area, on Tuesday, October 20, 2020.
“This evil, wicked, and audacious action, resulted in the unnecessary loss of lives, including Soldiers and Police Officers, and the destruction of both public and private properties, police stations, court buildings, and business premises.”
It was gathered that the IPOB members and Soldiers clashed from Thursday night till Friday evening.
The Spokesman for the 6 Division, Nigeria Army, Port Harcourt, Charles Ekeocha, could not be reached for comment on the matter, as he did not answer calls to his mobile phone, at the time of filing in this report.
Meanwhile, the State Police Command said that 2 Officers were killed, 4 police stations burnt, and over 50 vehicles set ablaze by suspected IPOB members who attacked the Oyigbo community, and other areas in the State.
The State Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan, stated this when he led Commanders of other Security Agencies in the State, to the Oyigbo Council Area, on Saturday.
In a statement by the Spokesman for the State Police Command, Nnamdi Omoni, the CP had ordered a full scale investigation into the incident, with a view to appending and prosecuting the culprits.
The statement noted: “The Rivers State Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan, today (Saturday), led Commanders of the sister Security Agencies in the State to Oyigbo Council Area, where hoodlums suspected to be members of the proscribed IPOB, under the guise of #EndSARS protests, invaded Oyigbo Area Command, Oyigbo, Afam, and Umuebulu Police Stations, where they attacked the Policemen on duty, and burnt down the 4 Police Formations.
“In the course of the attacks, over 50 vehicles were burnt, including 1 Armoured Personnel Carrier, killing 2 Policemen, who were hacked to death and set ablaze.”
Mukan condemned the attack on public and private property, describing it as ‘ill-conceived, most unfortunate, and an ill wind that would blow no one any good’, while condoling with the families of the slain Operatives.
He added: “The Command will stop at nothing, until the perpetrators of these dastardly acts are arrested and brought to justice.’’