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ACP Killed, 28 Confirmed Dead In Bloody Clash In Edo

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The Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP, name withheld), who was shot on Friday in Benin, the Edo State capital, in the exchange of gunfire with cultists who engaged in supremacy battle, died Saturday at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH).

The two other policemen, both Inspectors, who were also shot along with the ACP, were still receiving treatment at UBTH, but on danger list, with bodies littering the streets and roads of Benin and its environs

The Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP, name withheld), who was shot on Friday in Benin, the Edo State capital, in the exchange of gunfire with cultists who engaged in supremacy battle, died Saturday at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH).

The two other policemen, both Inspectors, who were also shot along with the ACP, were still receiving treatment at UBTH, but on danger list, with bodies littering the streets and roads of Benin and its environs.

The three policemen ran into an ambush by the rampaging Aiye and Vikings cult groups during rescue mission in the notorious Upper Sokponba and Murtala Mohammed Way axes of Benin.

Death of the ACP was confirmed in confidence Saturday evening through the telephone by a senior police Officer of Edo command.

The number of persons, both innocent residents and cultists, who lost their lives to the rival war between members of the two cult groups, rose to twenty eight, from Friday’s figure of eighteen, as the shootings and killings both at night and in broad daylight, still continued.

Our reporter gathered that policemen in Edo command were now receiving threat messages and calls from many of the fleeing 1,993 inmates, who escaped on October 19 from the Maximum Correctional Centre (White House) on Sapele Road and the Mèdium Correctional Centre on Airport Road, both in Benin, during the #EndSARS protests that were hijacked by hoodlums.

The threat calls and messages were mostly for policemen who investigated and prosecuted the convictions of the escapees.

It was also learnt that the sudden increase in the volume of illegal arms and ammunition in Edo state was as a result of the looting and razing of seven police stations in Edo on October 19, with large cache of arms and ammunition now in the hands of criminals, mostly the fleeing suspects in the cells of the burnt police stations and the escapees of the two correctional centres, mostly cultists, who immediately returned to crime.

Sadly, just Saturday, a medical practitioner, Dr. Maxwell Orosanye, working for the Edo state government-owned Central Hospital, Benin, was shot by the rampaging gunmen, suspected to be cultists, and he was still receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital in Edo.

Orosanye was shot near Mobil filling station on Siluko Road, Benin, while his Toyota Corolla saloon car was snatched at gunpoint.

Moving round the hot spots in Benin, especially Upper Sokponba, Siluko, Ibivwe, Uselu, Isihor, Iguosa and Ugbowo, hosting the Federal Government-owned University of Benin (UNIBEN), Saturday evening, revealed that the residents were living in fear and mostly remained indoors to avoid being hit by stray bullets, with night life disappearing.

The cultists were still looking for rivals to kill, while searching from house to house, without any challenge, in spite of the heavy deployment of soldiers in Benin and its environs.

The cultists were still openly brandishing AK-47 rifles, machetes, battle axes, broken bottles, clubs and other dangerous weapons in broad daylight, while always shooting sporadically throughout the night, thereby heightening tension in Benin and its environs.

Edo Commissiiner of Police, Babatunde Kokumo, through the telephone Saturday, insisted that officers and men of the command were working within existing limitations to restore normalcy to the state, while assuring that all the criminals would soon be arrested and prosecuted, to serve as a deterrent to others.

Kokumo said: “Just imagine what it means that three police stations along Sokponba Road, Benin were destroyed and burnt, patrol vehicles were destroyed in many other parts of Edo State. All the officers and men in the burnt police stations now operate from the state police headquarters (in Government Reservation Area, GRA, Benin).

“The peaceful #EndSARS protests were hijacked by hoodlums. The protests took a violent turn in Edo State, with inmates of the two correctional centres in Benin City set free. So, what do you expect?

“Some of the escapees have been sending threat messages to policemen, who investigated and prosecuted them. One of the escapees, who was convicted for murder, went that same day (October 19 this year) and he killed the prosecution witness in his village, but he was immediately rearrested.

“Everybody must be part of the restoration of sanity to Edo State. People who know the escapees should avail us information about them. I am assuring you that we are not sleeping, but with what has happened to the police in Edo State, some of these hitches are expected, but we are not sleeping and we will continue to work.

“As I speak to you, I am on my way to visit three of our personnel: an ACP and two Inspectors, who were shot and they are recuperating.”

Edo police commissioner also urged residents of the Southsouth state not to panic, but to go about their lawful businesses, while assuring of adequate protection of lives and property.

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#EndSARS: Most Businesses Looted & Destroyed In Lagos Were Owned By Igbos – Army

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The Nigerian Army has said that most of the businesses looted or destroyed in Lekki, Ajah, Sangotedo and nearby places were owned by people of Igbo extraction.

Brigadier-General Ahmed Ibrahim Taiwo stated this in his testimony at the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Enquiry and Restitution for Victims of SARS related abuses and other matters.

The Army is testifying following its invitation by the panel in the wake of the October 20 shootings at the Lekki Toll Gate.

The Army has denied accusations that it shot and killed unarmed protesters.

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Lekki Shooting: 81 Dons Write Biden, Seek Travel Ban For Culpable Officials

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Eighty-one professors of African Studies, both Nigerians and non-Nigerians, have written a letter to the United States President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, seeking sanctions, including travel ban, for those responsible for the shooting of unarmed protesters at the Lekki tollgate area of Lagos on October 20.

In their letter dated November 13, 2020, the dons urged specific policy actions in response to the #EndSARS movement in Nigeria from the incoming Biden/Harris administration.

The dons specifically wrote to the Biden-Harris Transition Team, chaired by Ted Kaufman, and co-chaired by Anita Dunn, Cedric Richmond, Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Jeffrey Zients.

The professors who signed the letter include Carl LeVan, American University; Chiedo Nwankwor, Johns Hopkins-SAIS; Patrick Ukata, Halsik Group; Rita “Kiki” Edozie, University of Massachusetts – Boston; and Olufemi Vaughan, Amherst College.

Others are John Campbell, Council on Foreign Relations; Steve Feldstein, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; Mojubaolu Olufunke Okome, Brooklyn College – CUNY; Onwubiko Agozino, Virginia Tech; Matthias Chika Mordi, Johns Hopkins – SAIS; Brandon Kendhammer, Ohio University; Omolade Adunbi, University of Michigan – Ann Arbor; and Shobana Shankhar, Stony Brook, SUNY.

The letter read in part, “We, therefore, urge the United States to: Use the authority granted under the Global Magnitsky Act to place targeted sanctions, including asset freezes and travel bans, on politicians, officials and other Nigerians implicated in recent human rights abuses. These incidents should include but not be limited to the ‘Lekki Toll Gate Massacre’, various attacks on protestors since October 8, and other abuses of Nigerians engaged in peaceful free speech activities.

The scholars also sought the suspension of security assistance and military sales to the Nigeria Police Force and security forces implicated in or broadly culpable for violence utilised against #EndSARS protesters “until the Buhari administration fully complies with relevant laws and policies to ensure accountability for human rights violations.”

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Fear Grips Policemen In Edo Over Threats From Jail Breakers

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The worsening security situation in Benin City, Edo State capital, deteriorated on Saturday as policemen, especially those who served as Investigating Police Officers (IPO’s) of the prisoners who escaped from the two Correctional Centres in the city, have been receiving threat messages from the escapees.

This was just as a medical doctor attached to the Central Hospital, Benin City, Maxwell Orosanye, was shot on Saturday at Mobil filling station along Siluko road and his Toyota Corolla car snatched from him.

Edo State Commissioner of Police, Johnson Kokumo, who disclosed the threats to his officers and men added that the text messages were sent to those officers whose in the course of their duty, prosecuted and secured the conviction of the escaped prisoners.

Kokumo disclosed that his men had been working with the existing limitations to restore normalcy to the state, just as he said the three policemen shot on Friday by hoodlums were recuperating.

“You can imagine what it means that three police stations along Sokponba Road were destroyed and burnt, patrol vehicles destroyed in several other parts of the state capital, all the officers in these stations now operate from the headquarters”, he lamented.

It would be recalled that the #EndSARS protest was on October 19 hijacked by hoodlums and in the ensuing violence, inmates were set free from the two Correctional Centres at Sapele Road and Oko, Airport Road. This was in addition to burning down of seven police stations in the Benin metropolis.

The situation, the top police officer noted, was telling on the operations of the Command.

“What do you expect? Some of these escapees have been sending threat messages to policemen who investigated and prosecuted them, one of the escapees who was convicted for murder went that same day to kill the prosecution witness in his village, but he was rearrested immediately. Everybody must be part of the restoration of sanity. People who know these escapees should avail us information about them”, the Commissioner of Police pleaded.

He however, assured that “we are not sleeping but with what has happened to the police in Edo, some of these hitches are expected. But we are not sleeping and we will continue to work. As I speak to you I am on my way to visit three of our personnel, an Assistant Commissioner of Police and two Inspectors who were shot, they recuperating.”

Three persons were Saturday shot dead along Evidence Street by Isior, an outskirt of Benin. while two other dead bodies were discovered near Uselu along Ugbowo Road early Saturday morning.

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