By Jude Michael
There was pandamonium in Isuaniocha, Awka North Local Government area of Anambra State, Saturday, September 16, when some suspected hoodlums invaded the town and opened fire on police operatives who were on a peace keeping mission in the area. It was a development that further exacerbated tension in a town already ravaged by crises.
An eye witness narrated that the hoodlums came in three tinted Hilux vehicles; one Lexus 330, three shuttle buses and a Toyota Corolla car at about four o’clock in the evening.
The situation caused panic in the area as road users, motorists, shop owners and residents scampered for safety.
Speaking with journalists on the phone, the acting President General of Isuaniocha Community, Mr Friedrich Egwunwa, described the incident as very unfortunate and an attempt by some criminal elements to wipe out the people of the town who had embraced peace.
According to him, the hoodlums were led by one Mr Onyemazi Ngini who, he alleged, had been on the run for the various atrocious acts he had committed in the community.
He mentioned other names they were able to identify during the incident to include Sylvester Ngini, Charles Okoye, Chukwuma Onyibo, Nonso and Okwudili, all, he said, who had been on the wanted list of the police.
The acting PG appealed to the Anambra State Government and the Inspector General of Police to wade into the crises rocking Isuaniocha in the interest of the people whom, he said, were always at the receiving end whenever there was an attack by the hoodlums.
Mr Egwunwa said during the exchange of gunfire the hoodlums all entered their vehicles to escape but luck ran out on one of them who claimed he was a security personnel when he was caught.
He told journalists that two persons were injured during the incident, while the suspect who claimed to be from the Department of State Security was later transferred to Zone 13 by police operatives.
Also speaking, a community leader, Chief Tony Onyeagolu, alleged that the hoodlums were mobilized by the Commissioner for Homeland Affairs, Mr Chikodi Anara, who, he alleged, was bent on ensuring that the community was never in peace for his personal gains.
Chief Onyeagolu noted that the attack on security personnel confirmed the earlier position of the people that a particular set of persons being sponsored by the commissioner were all out to cause chaos in the area to cover their tracks.
The people accused the Nigeria security operatives of conniving with some persons that had already been declared wanted to cause problems in Isuaniocha.
When contacted on the phone, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, said security agents had already been deployed to the community to ensure law and order.
Ikenga who said the situation was already under control, called on the people to cooperate with the police to fish out those who were involved in the act.
Fides reports that while the hoodlums were driving out of the community, one of their Hilux vehicles fell into a ditch and caught fire around the Obibia Bridge axis of thee ever busy road.
Over one thousand persons, including aged men and women, recently staged a peaceful protest to the government house, calling on Governor Chukwuma Suludo to urgently intervene on the crises rocking the community.