By Anayo Onukwugha, Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Police Command has launched a manhunt for the killers of seven policemen during attacks on two police stations and a checkpoint in parts of the state.
Gunmen had on Friday night killed the policemen during attacks at the Elimgbu Divisional Police headquarters in Obio/Akpor local government area as well as Rumuji Divisional Police headquarters, and C4i checkpoint, all along the East-West Road in Emohua local government area of the state.
Police spokesman, Nnamdi Omoni, in a statement issued in Port Harcourt yesterday, said the commissioner of police, Eboka Friday, led members of his management team and tactical commanders to the respective scenes for an assessment.
Omoni stated that although no police station was burnt during the attacks, five assault rifles belonging to the police were lost during the incidents.
The statement reads in part: “The Rivers State Police Command can confirm the unprovoked and mindless attack on policemen and vehicles.
“The incident which led to the death of seven policemen occurred last night at about 20:30hrs, where unknown gunmen driven in two branded Hilux vans attacked the special check point at Choba Bridge, where in a surprised attack, killed two policemen on duty and set ablaze a car belonging to one of the policemen.
“A similar attack was launched at Rumuji Police Station by the same hoodlums who killed two policemen on duty and burnt a police patrol vehicle. However, a stiff resistance by the police prevented the hoodlums from gaining access into the police station. In the course of exchange of fire, two of the attackers were fatally wounded and died on the spot.
“The third attack at Elimgbu Police Station was equally resisted by the police, though three officers were killed in that attack, the serious fire engagement made them to abandon their bullet riddled Hilux van, while they escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds with a snatched Sienna bus.
“The continued engagement by the police also forced them to abandon the Sienna car they were using to escape at the Refinery Junction, while their remnants again escaped with bullet wounds.
“In the meantime, the corpses of the fallen heroes have been evacuated and deposited in the mortuary, while the Commissioner of Police, CP. Eboka Friday, who led members of his management team and tactical commanders to the respective scenes this morning for an on-the-spot assessment, has launched a serious manhunt for the perpetrators with a view to apprehending the culprits and bringing them to justice.
“The public is hereby enjoined to increase their security consciousness and report any person or persons with gun wounds to the nearest Police Station.”