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Nine Suspected IPOB Members Arrested Over Killing Of Four Policemen, Couple In Imo

Imo State Police Command has arrested nine suspected Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its militia affiliate, Eastern Security Network (ESN) terrorists- including the Sector Commander of the syndicate in Mbaise Local Government Area of the State.

Four of the suspects were arrested on Monday, April 24, 2023, following an investigation to unravel the hoodlums who killed four gallant Police Officers and a couple in Ngor-Okpala area of the State on April 21, 2023. 

A detachment of the Command’s tactical team arrested the Sect Commander, 48-year-old Mathew Chuwkuma of Mpam Ahaizu Mbaise, at his hideout in Umuahia, Abia State. 

In a statement on Sunday, the State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Henry Okoye, said the 48-year-old suspect confessed to being a Sect Commander and identified three other members of his syndicate aged between 44 and 53.

“He confessed to being the Sector Commander of a dreadful IPOB/ESN syndicate in Mbaise and assisted the curious operatives in arresting three of his syndicate named Ojoko Ikechukwu 53yrs ‘m’ of Umugwa, Chilaka Charles 44yrs ‘m’ of Umuezuo, and Anthony Iwu 50yrs ‘m’ of Umugwa all in Umuokiria, Ahaizu Mbaise LGA of Imo State in their Criminal hideout while others escaped. 

“On searching the suspects and their hideout, the following incriminating items: one cut-to-size AK 47 rifle, One hundred and Ninety rounds of live 7.62 mm Ammunition, Two AK 47 magazines, two cut-to-size double barrel guns, one locally fabricated Berretta pistol, were recovered from the terrorists’ hideout. 

“In the course of the investigation, the suspects all confessed to being members of the dreadful IPOB/ESN syndicate terrorizing the good people of Imo State and had a hand in the recent killing of four Police officers and two civilians at Ngor Okpala,” he said.

The suspect further revealed crucial information that assisted the Operatives in raiding their second hideout/shrine in Itu, Ezinitte Mbaise LGA, on Thursday, April 27, 2023. Four other notorious IPOB/ESN members on the Command wanted list due to their nefarious activities were arrested. 

They are 50-year-old Ibe Demian, 31-year-old Iwuala Simon,  47-year-old Nwabueze Ahiwe of Onicha Ezinititte Mbaise LGA,  and 70-year-old Obali Paul of Itu Ezinihitte Mbaise LGA, who is the Chief Priest of the criminal syndicate.

“On sighting the Operatives, the notorious criminal syndicate engaged them in a fierce gun duel but were overpowered by the super firepower of the combat-ready tactical squad, which forced them to disarray and resulted in the arrest of four other suspects.

“On searching their second hideout, which also serves as a shrine where they perform fetish rituals, one AK 47 riffle, three pump action guns, two single barrel locally made guns, one locally made pistol, one cut to size gun, 50 rounds of 7.66mm live ammunition, 38 rounds of live cartridges, two AK 47 magazines, two locally made explosive devices, one iPhone, One H-mobile, Walkie-Talkie, three cow horns painted with Biafran Insignia, two Biafran Jewish caps, Jewish Flag, a large quantity of weeds suspected to be Cannabis Sativa and other fetish objects, were recovered,” he added.

Efforts are on top gear to arrest other syndicate members at large and make them face the full wrath of the law.

While commending the operatives for a job well done, the State Commissioner of Police, CP Mohammed Ahmed Barde, stressed that policing is a collective responsibility and appealed to the good people of the State to join hands with the Police and other sister security agencies in the fight against terrorism. 

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