There is palpable tension and anarchy in Abonnema, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State 48 hours to the rerun elections with the killing of a Major in the Nigerian Army and two soldiers.
They were reportedly killed on Thursday during a gun battle with unknown gunmen in the area. It was gathered that the major and the soldiers succumbed to various degrees of gunshot injuries sustained during the encounter.
The Nigerian Army has however confirmed that a Major and a soldier were killed, in the encounter coming about 48 hours to the National and State Assembly rerun elections scheduled to hold in the state on Saturday.
The Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, 2 Brigade, Port Harcourt, Capt. Elli Lazarus, confirmed the deaths to the News Agency of Nigeria.
He said, “At about 11 a.m. on Thursday, March 17, troops on patrol in Abonema, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers, had a fierce encounter with a group of unknown gunmen suspected to be sea pirates.
“Our men displayed extraordinary gallantry, but unfortunately, an officer and a soldier who sustained various degrees of injury during the encounter, lost their lives.
“We are currently in pursuit of the criminals and we will surely apprehend them,” he said.
Lazarus, however, urged residents of the state to go about their lawful activities without fear of molestation.
He assured them that the army had made necessary arrangements to ensure sustainable peace and security of lives and properties before, during and after the parliamentary elections in the state.
The killing comes few days after a 28-year-old man was killed and beheaded, and another APC ward chairman was killed and burnt.
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