Nigeria

Police: Gunmen attack Imo lawmaker’s home, behead security guard

The Nigeria Police Force says its investigation shows that Boko Haram, Ansaru and other terror groups are getting support from some Nigerians.

Gunmen have attacked the country home of Ekene Nnodimele, the lawmaker representing Orsu State Constituency in the Imo House of Assembly.

The Commissioner of Police in Imo State, Abutu Yaro, confirmed this to reporters in Owerri on Wednesday.

Yaro said the attack took place at about 1.00 a.m. on Wednesday, and that the gunmen beheaded a security guard on duty in the compound.

He said investigation was ongoing to unravel the cause and perpetrators of the attack and bring them to book.

“We can confirm that there was an attack on the country home of Nnodimele, resulting in the death of a security guard on duty who appeared to have been beheaded.

“Also, the country home of the immediate past Attorney General of the state, Cyprian Akaolisa, was also attacked and investigation is also ongoing,” he said.

Speaking to reporters in his hometown, Obibi, Awo-Idemili community, Orsu Local Government Area of Imo, Nnodimele confirmed that a security guard on duty in his compound was beheaded.

Nnodimele said the guard, attached to a private security firm, was killed when he tried to resist the gunmen.

The lawmaker said he was shocked by the incident. He said his constituents were neither violent nor rancorous.

He urged security operatives to beef up security in the local government area and also unravel the circumstances surrounding the attack.

“It was very shocking news to me because my aged parents were there. It is not in our culture to take or end life arbitrarily, so I believe it is the handiwork of foreign mercenaries and I leave everything to Almighty God.

Nnodimele said he would continue to support the state government. He urged his constituents to remain law abiding and cooperate with law enforcement agencies so as to return peace to the area.

The lawmaker also confirmed an attack on Akaolisa’s country home which is in the same area.

He said that gunshots were heard at the home of the erstwhile commissioner for Justice before the hoodlums moved to his own home.

Although parts of the former commissioner’s house were burnt, no lives were lost in the attack, he said.

The two attacks signal a new dimension in the current security challenges in Imo State – this is the first time the private residence of a lawmaker has been attacked in the state.

The country home of Governor Hope Uzodinma was attacked in April by gunmen who set ablaze a part of it.

Ahmed Gulak, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress and former political adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan, was recently shot dead in Owerri.

IPOB, a pro-Biafra group, which has been proscribed by the Nigerian government, has a high concentration of its members and supporters in Imo State which appears to be the epicentre of the group’s activities in the country’s South-east region.

Apart from the frequent deadly attacks on security officials, there have been reports of police, including the Nigerian military, carrying out indiscriminate killings and arrests of civilians in the state.

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