Adekunle Peter, Benin
Four police personnel were, on Tuesday, killed by some yet-to-be identified gunmen at the Afuze Police Station in Edo State.
Afuze is the administrative headquarters of Owan East Local Government Area of the state.
The Edo State Police Command gave the names of the murdered personnel as the Divisional Police Officer, Tosimani Ojo; the Divisional Crime Officer, Inspector Sado Isaac; Woman Sergeant Justina Aghomon, who was said to be pregnant; and Corporal Glory David.
Aghomon was said to have been recently transferred to Afuze from Benin.
It was gathered that the assailants attacked the DPO’s office with dynamite before descending on other police personnel on duty.
Unconfirmed reports had it that the DPO, who was at home, was lured to the station on the pretext that he had visitors.
The heavily armed hoodlums were said to have broke the gates of the cells in the station and released all the suspects being detained there.
It was, however, gathered that three of the fleeing suspects had been rearrested.
Not done, the hoodlums were said to have gone to the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Afuze, where they set ablaze a police patrol van and electoral materials.
While no one could give the exact reason for the killings, some residents said the incident could be drug-related.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Muhammed DanMallam, who visited the scenes of the incident, said investigation would commence immediately.
DanMallam vowed that those responsible for the attacks would be brought to justice.
“Urgent steps will be taken to curb the increasing cases of criminality in the Owan axis of the state,” he said.
A resident of Afuze, Mr Godwin Ikpekhia, said, “We only heard gunshots and nobody knew what happened until this morning.
“The Divisional Police Officer and three other officers, who were on duty, were killed inside the station.
“The hoodlums didn’t stop at that; they went to the INEC office and were shooting at those who were on duty. Election materials and a police van at the INEC office were burnt by the hoodlums.”
Attacks on officers and men of the Nigeria Police have become regular in Owan in recent times.
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