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Soldiers invade Rivers community after colleague’s death

Soldiers invade Rivers community after colleague’s death

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Sampson Itode, Port Harcourt

Soldiers on Saturday invaded some communities in Abua, Abua-Odual Local Government Area of Rivers State in response to the killing of their colleague.

Southern City News had reported that a soldier, one policeman and a civilian were killed during a failed kidnap attempt on two expatriate workers of an oil company.

It was gathered that soldiers, presumably in response to their colleague’s killing, invaded the communities as early as 4am, allegedly harassing, intimidating innocent residents and blocked movements in the areas.

 A youth from Omelema community, who did not want his name in print for security reasons, said the soldiers chased and arrested residents in the early hours of Saturday.

He said, “I was surprised to see the soldiers everywhere; some were stopping okada riders and arresting them together with their bikes. Others were forcing everyone to sit on the ground – both the young and the old.”

Another source said after taking control of the local government headquarters, the soldiers proceeded to Okpeden South area of the LGA, where their colleague was killed alongside others last Monday.

However, a resident of Otari community told Southern City News that the soldiers later withdrew from the communities around 10.15am on the same day and released all the people arrested.

 It was learnt that those who fled into the surrounding bushes for safety had also started returning to their homes.

Earlier, the lawmaker representing Abua/ Odual, Ahoada East Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Mrs Betty Apiafi, in company with some political appointees from the area, visited the scene of the crime in Ogbemakoku/Iyak and condemned the act.

 When contacted, the spokesman for the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Col. Aminu Iliyasu, said he was not in town and would speak on the matter later.

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