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Militants kill police sergeant, loot armoury in Ogun

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SAMSON FOLARIN

Suspected militants have attacked the headquarters of the Marine Police in Iwopin, in the Ogun Waterside Local Government Area of Ogun State, killing a sergeant and injuring at least two others.

The assailants were alleged to have looted the police armoury, and carted away weapons, including a speedboat.

SUNDAY PUNCH learnt that the deceased cop, Sergeant Segun Akinola, and his colleagues were on duty around 8.45pm on Thursday when the gunmen struck.

A source in the community told our correspondent that the policemen, who were ill-equipped, were caught unawares.

He said, “Around 8.45pm, the militants entered the community through the waterways. They got down from their boats and started shooting indiscriminately.

“When they got to the Marine Police Station, they shot the Sergeant dead. They wounded two others before entering into their armoury and carting away weapons, including a speedboat.

“They left after the operation which lasted about one and a half hours in the place. They didn’t have any disturbance or confrontation throughout the period. They later escaped through the waterways.”

A community leader, who did not want to be identified, said the attack was a reprisal for the arrest and killing of a militant.

Our correspondent had reported about two weeks ago that the gunmen raided the home of a businessman in the community and carted away huge sums of money and other property.

After the operation, their vehicle was said to have broken down after which they were stranded.

Our correspondent reported that the militants, while looking for an escape route, shot dead three members of the community.

Residents were said to have tracked the owner of the broken down vehicle, who drove the assailants that night.

The suspect, an Ijaw youth, was reportedly mobbed before he was handed over to the police.

Our source said, “The information was that the suspect later died and that angered the militants, which was the reason for this attack.

“The problem is that those policemen are ill-equipped and the place is unfit to be a police post or station, let alone the headquarters of the Marine Police in Ogun State. The militants caught them unawares. They did this to instill fear into the people.”

The Chairman of the area, Femi Onanuga, confirmed the incident, adding that the state Commissioner of Police had visited the area.

He noted that although no arrest had been made, the police promised to go after the assailants.

“The marine headquarters is not well equipped. It was unfortunate,” he added.

The spokesperson for the police in Ogun State, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the incident.

He said, “They attacked the marine station at Iwopin. The commissioner of police visited the place on Friday to assess the situation and see things for himself. He was there with the deputy commissioner of operations to reinforce security. Special units have been deployed in the area to provide security for lives and property.”

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