The attack at Nnenasa ,Njaba local government area which led to the killing of two traditional rulers while others were hospitalized has continued to reverberate in Imo as residents of the Local government, most of whom are eyewitnesses to the incident have come out with their own version of the sad development.
No fewer than three participants at the ill-fated stakeholders’ meeting at Njaba council area described the claim by the Police that they were not notified about the meeting, as untrue.
One of the locals who attended the meeting at Nnenasa, Njaba council area of Imo state, where two traditional rulers were shot dead by armed assailants said the police was notified and a police team was on ground at the meeting.
The native who said he is from Ibele in Umuaka area of the LGA, said almost everyone in attendance saw the Operation Search and Flush team at the venue of the meeting and it would be unfair to say the Police was not notified.
“They were actually the reason some of the people were emboldened to attend the meeting. They left the council less than an hour after the meeting commenced. Just before they eventually left, a number of persons had noticed the council Chairman, Emeka Iheanacho argueing with their leader on why he cannot pull out his men after the meeting had already commenced. It was later gathered that they said they were summoned by their commander to Owerri. About an hour or two after the Police team left, the hoodlums struck.
“So to say the least, it is offensive for the Police to suggest they were not notified about the meeting. And if they were patrolling Njaba like they assured, they obviously would not miss a gathering of that nature.
“If not that the Chairman is still tied up with efforts to save others who are still in critical conditions at the hospitals, I’m sure he would have had an answer to this unjust claim”, he stressed.
The police in a statement signed by the Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Mike Abattam, had said that they were not notified about the meeting so as to provide adequate security.
However, witnesses to the incident countered the police, saying that they were adequately informed and even sent some men to the place.
Following the Tuesday attack on Njaba stakeholders, the Commissioner of Police, CP Rabiu Hussaini, immediately, dispatched the command’s tactical teams comprising of the Special forces, Rapid Response Squad and Anti-kidnapping Squad to the scene, on their arrival at the scene, they were informed by the police patrol teams patrolling the area, that the hoodlums fled into the bush on sighting them.
According to the Police, “two of the traditional rulers namely: HRH. Eze S. C Osunwa of Ihebinowere Autonomous Community and HRH. Eze Barr A. E Durueburuo of Okwudor Autonomous Community lost their lives in the attack” while HRH. Eze A.N. Onyeka of Nkume Autonomous Community, HRH Eze Uche Nwaka of Umunam autonomous community, and HRH Eze P.C Ukonu sustained gunshot injuries.
The Police statement further read: “It is on record that, the police station in Njaba was recently attacked and razed by hoodlums suspected to be IPOB/ ESN terror groups, where two police officers lost their lives. Thus, the command had to post Policemen to the area on vehicular patrols to help in checkmating crimes and criminalities, pending when a new police station will be rebuilt.”