By Patrick Ochoga, Benin City
In what looked like a renewed cult war in Benin City, four persons have been killed between Wednesday and Thursday in several parts of the Edo state capital.
Meanwhile robbers were on rampage at the New Benin area beside Oguola Primary School on Thursday morning as they robbed a Point of Sale (PoS) operator and dispossessed several persons of their phones and other items including money.
Most of the other victims apart from the PoS operator were those who repair car stereos.
One of the victims killed by suspected rival cult members was identified as Emmanuel Michael who was said to be attending to a customer in the mechanic workshop located at Osasogie Street when the gunmen struck. It was gathered that the incident happened at about 6.20pm on Wednesday.
An eye witness told journalists that the gunmen shot sporadically into the air before going straight to their suspected target to kill him.
He said, “The gun-wielding men stormed the mechanic shop at about 6.20 pm on Wednesday. Upon noticing that he was their target, the assailants immediately went straight to the said Emmanuel Michael and fired several gunshots into his head, killing him on the spot.
“The situation forced the residents to flee the area while owners of shops quickly locked up and fled. It took the intervention of the Edo State Joint Security Team to restore normalcy in the area.”
This came a few hours after an unidentified furniture maker (carpenter) was killed by gunmen at his Aragua Street workshop, off Wire road also in the Edo State capital.
Two other persons were killed around Uwelu Spare parts one of them said to be a taxi driver and was identified simply as David who was said to have been shot while he was making arrangements to tow his car while the identity of the second person is still unknown.
A friend of David who was popularly called Dave narrated the incident to LEADERSHIP stated that, “He went to Uwelu and he told me the bottom plate of his car got broken when he drove through an unfamiliar road. I called on Wednesday afternoon and he said he was making arrangements to fix the car. Later in the evening, his phone was no longer reachable till this morning (yesterday) when I now called one of our common friends who went to find out told me Dave was one of the two persons killed. He was shot in the head.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Chidi Nwabuzor said he had not been briefed of the incidents but that he would make an official response after getting the details.