* Text Box: FG orders police to step up operations to stop South-east attacks
David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka and Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
The federal government has ordered the police to step up operations to stop attacks on their formations in the South-east and other parts of the country.
The Minister of Police Affairs, Mr. Mohammad Dingyadi, who gave the order, also commended police personnel for repelling an attack on the Zonal Police Headquarters, Zone 13, in Ukpo, Anambra State.
The Anambra State Commissioner for Police, Mr. Kuryas Monday, is to lead a special operation aimed at tracing, identifying and arresting the attackers of the zonal command headquarters.
Besides the attack on the zonal command, the Divisional Police Headquarters, Uzuakoli in Bende Local Government Area of Abia State, was in the early hours of yesterday razed down by yet-to-be identified hoodlums.
Dingyadi said he had directed an intelligence-led kinetic operation to neutralise perpetrators of violence in the South-east.
“I commend last night repel of attack on Zone 13, zonal headquarters Anambra State, leading to recovery of one GMP gun used by the hoodlums. I’ve directed an intelligence-led kinetic operational to neutralise perpetrators of violence in the South-east and elsewhere in Nigeria,” the minister tweeted.
Manhunt Launched for Attackers of Anambra Zonal Headquarters
Gunmen in the wee hours of yesterday attacked the Zonal Police Headquarters, Zone 13, Ukpo in Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State.
A video circulated on social media and made by a police officer on duty at the zonal headquarters, showed that a building in the compound was set ablaze, while vehicles on the premises were also burnt.
THISDAY gathered that two policemen, an inspector and a constable, were killed in the attack.
The zonal police headquarters has also confirmed that its facility was attacked by gunmen.
The Zonal Public Relations Officer, Nkeiruka Nwode, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, said in a statement yesterday that the attackers were repelled and some of their arms seized.
She said: “Operatives of the Nigeria Police Force attached to Zone 13 Headquarters, Ukpo, Anambra State, have successfully repelled an attack on the zonal headquarters by criminal elements in the early hours of today, April 19, 2021.
“The attackers, who came in their numbers shooting sporadically in order to gain access to the facility, were repelled by police personnel on duty who showed profound gallantry in the face of the seemingly overwhelming attack.
“Following the inability of the attackers to access the facility, they threw petrol bombs and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) on vehicles within the periphery of the headquarters.”
She, could not confirm if policemen were killed during the attack, but said one of the criminals was neutralised during the exchange of gunfire between the police and the attackers while many of the gang members escaped with gunshots injuries.
“One L7A2 General-Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG), 92 rounds of 7.62mm live ammunition, one locally-made smoke pistol and an axe were recovered by the police. Regrettably, two police operatives sustained gunshot injuries and are presently receiving treatment,” she added.
She also quoted yesterday, who was also standing in for the Zonal Assistant Inspector General of Police as commending the police personnel for repelling the attackers.
“The CP, supported by other senior officers from Zone 13 headquarters and the state command, is personally leading a special operation aimed at tracing, identifying and arresting the perpetrators to bring them to book.
“He also called on proprietors of private and public (including unorthodox) medical facilities in and around Anambra State to admit, but report anyone found seeking medical attention for bullet wounds and related injuries to the nearest police station,” she stated.
Monday urged the people of the state to be steadfast and go about their lawful duties, saying that the police will continually provide them with security.
Again, Hoodlums Raze Police Station in Abia
Meanwhile, the Divisional Police Headquarters, Uzuakoli in Bende LGA of Abia State, was in the early hours of yesterday razed down by hoodlums.
The spokesman of the state police command, Geoffrey Ogbonna, a Superintendent of Police, confirmed the attack to journalists in Umuahia, saying that the hoodlums struck at about 2.00am yesterday.
He said the hoodlums used rocket launchers and dynamite to burn down the police station, adding that the policemen on duty had resisted the attackers but were overpowered.
According to Ogbonna, two detainees in police cell were set free by the attackers while some vehicles were burnt. But no life was lost and no arms looted.
He said that the police had launched investigation into the incident and would get at those behind it.