There is palpable tension in Imo State, following the murder of 7 Traders of Northern extraction, under Governor Hope Uzodinma’s watch, Page 36 learnt.
It was gathered that the victims were killed in separate shooting incidents, in Orlu town and Umuaka, in Njaba Local Government Area, between Friday and Saturday.
Narrating the incident to Newsmen, an eyewitness, Harisu Umaru Ishiaku, said that the killers, dressed in Nigerian Military uniform, stormed Afor Umuaka Market around 8:30pm, and attacked the victims.
He stated that 4 of the victims who are within the age bracket of 45 years and 30 years old, have lived in the area for many years.
While suspecting that the people who carried out the attack are strangers, he said that there has never been any issue between the deceased and people of Umuaka community.
According to the Imo State Coordinator of Hausa Traders, Mallam Ibrahim Abdulkadir, the first incident happened on Friday, when 3 Suya sellers were about to close for the day.
He stated that some gunmen in a Sienna car, emerged suddenly and pumped bullets into their body.
He disclosed that in a similar style, the same set of gunmen attacked 4 Hausa Traders, at Umuaka, in Njaba.
Abdulkadir said that Hausa Traders in Orlu now live in fear, adding that, some of them have relocated to Owerri, the State capital.
His words: “Actually, this thing started on the second of this month. I was called that three people had been killed by some men operating in a Siena car. They were Suya sellers.
“Just as we were about to handle the situation, I was called again that four people were killed by the same people.”
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Imo State on Gender, Vulnerable Groups, Northern Affairs (Men), Hon. Sulaiman Ibrahim Sulaiman, said that the State Government, as well as all the Units of Security Agencies, have waded into the matter.
While calling for peace to reign in the region, Sulaiman stated that Governor Uzodinma is disturbed by the incidents.
“We have just finished a meeting with government Officials and Heads of Security Agencies in the State. They have waded into the matter, to ensure that peace reigns. We cannot continue like this. We must nip this in the bud, for the peace and security of our country.”
While claiming that the killings were politically-motivated, he assured the Northern community of the commitment of the government of Imo State, to putting a stop to the attacks.
More news later…