Home » Bayelsa, Headlines, Ndiameeh Babrik, State News » Bloodbath in Bayelsa •4 soldiers, 4 policemen killed by gunmen •Explosives create panic in Yenagoa

Bloodbath in Bayelsa •4 soldiers, 4 policemen killed by gunmen •Explosives create panic in Yenagoa

THE seeming prevalent peace and security in Bayelsa State, were on Thursday around 10.00 a.m, shattered as unidentified gunmen unleashed attack on security operatives at different locations, on the waterways, killing four soldiers, including a lieutenant-colonel and four policemen.

Investigations by the Nigerian Tribune revealed that the suspected gunmen, who operated in three speedboats, swiftly swooped on the military personnel, who were enroute Ogbia from Nembe, in Brass Local Government Area of the state on a patrol duty.

As a result of the development, security formations in the state were thrown into mourning, as some officers were sighted discussing the violent attack in hush tones.

The four soldiers, who were felled by the assailants’ bullets, belonged to the Joint Task Force (JTF) codenamed “Operation Pulo Shield,” saddled with the responsibilities of securing oil installations and waterways along the Niger Delta.

A credible source informed our correspondent that a lieutenant-colonel, whose name could not be confirmed at the time of this report, was among the casualties recorded after the dastardly act.

While palpable fear and pandemonium created by the killing of the soldiers at a place popularly known as ‘Right Hand’ were yet to subside, four marine policemen were also shot  dead by bandits, who were suspected to be the same gang that murdered the soldiers.

The policemen were said to have been killed at a police post on the Nembe waterways. A police source, who pleaded anonymity, informed the Nigerian Tribune that the bandits disguised as travellers, but on getting closer to the checkpoint pulled out their guns and opened fire on the officers, who were caught unawares.

According to the source, the four bodies of the slain officers were later retrieved from the water after the gory incident.

Further checks by the Nigerian Tribune indicated that oil installations were not also spared as two pipelines belonging to the Nigerian Agip Oil Company were also attacked by unknown persons at Ogolobiri, in Brass Local Government Area and Tundaba community in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area.

When our correspondent visited the command, the Bayelsa State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), ASP Eguavoen Emokpae confirmed the development and said soldiers and police officers were combing the areas for the culprits.

“We are beefing security and gathering intelligence to apprehend the bandits. Till now, we have not made any arrest.”

Reacting to the attack, the media coordinator of JTF, Lieutenant-Colonel Timothy Antigha, said that “There are unconfirmed reports of an armed attack on military personnel by yet to be identified gunmen. The attack reportedly took place at about 10.00 a.m. while the personnel were enroute Ogbia from Brass. The details are still sketchy for now, but investigation is on.”

In another development, explosives, suspected to be dynamites, were detonated by unknown persons in Yenagoa on Wednesday night, precipitating fear and pandemonium around the Opolo and Customs roads. But no casualty was recorded in the two separate blasts.

Nigerian Tribune was told that the first explosion went off at Opolo at about 12.45 a.m, close to Diete Koki Memorial Hospital and not far from the headquarters of JTF in the state.

When our correspondent visited the area, it was observed that part of the roof of the security building was damaged by the explosion, just as it drilled a hole on the concrete floor. One of the workers in the hospital, who identified himself simply as Ishmaila, said the building was shaken by the explosion, disclosing that security operatives inspected the area on Thursday morning.

The Opolo blast occurred shortly after another explosion rattled the residents of Customs Road at about 9.30 p.m.
Commenting on the explosion, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Chris Olakpe, confirmed the development, insisting that the explosions were handiwork of mischief makers, who were on a mission to seek attention, just as he charged the people to disregard the incident and go about their normal business, assuring that culprits would be unmasked soonest.

-Tribune

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Posted by on Mar 1 2012. Filed under Bayelsa, Headlines, Ndiameeh Babrik, State News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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