100 gunmen hit Bende police station in Abia, free detainees

By Sam Oditah

Dare-devil gunmen, numbering at least 100, have attacked Bende Divisional Police Station in Abia, leaving two operatives with gunshot wounds.

Eyewitness account said the hoodlums set the station on fire at about 11 pm on Wednesday.

“We heard a cacophony of gunshots around 10.45 pm and when we rushed outside, we saw the station on fire.

“At that point, it dawned on us that the station was under attack so everybody began to scamper for safety,” the eyewitness said on the condition of anonymity.

The Spokesman of the state command, SP Godfrey Ogbonna, confirmed the attack in Umuahia on Thursday.

Ogbonna said the operatives were shot in the leg and that the attackers also burnt down the generator house and a multi-purpose building, belonging to Bende Local Government.

He said the hoodlums later released criminal suspects, who were detained at the station.

“They also burnt two vehicles, including the Divisional Police Officer’s Highlander Jeep, and three motorcycles, parked at the station,” he said.

Ogbonna said that it was not clear how the bandits arrived at the place in their numbers.

“We do not know yet how they all gathered to execute the attack at the station.

“Maybe they parked their vehicles away from their target and walked through footpaths to the place,” he said.

He said the command had embarked on full investigations into the incident and other recent gunmen attacks in different parts of the state.

The police station is located at the main entrance to Bende council headquarters.

The attack happened barely six hours after Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu left the council premises, venue of the reception of a former legislator, Nnenna Ukeje, back to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Ukeje dumped PDP for the All Progressives Congress in 2019 after losing the party’s ticket to return to the House of Representatives for the fourth tenure.

The gunmen recently embarked on serial attacks on government facilities in Abia, including police formations and the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The violent attacks have left many operatives dead with many others sustaining gunshot wounds.