By Tony Edike
ENUGUâ€”RESIDENTS of the academic town of Nsukka, Enugu State were gripped by fear, yesterday, following alleged reports that a gang of armed robbers planned to launch another deadly attack on some banks in the town.
All the banks operating in the town remained closed throughout yesterday for fear of being attacked by the armed bandits,Â who unconfirmed reports said had sent signals to the financial institutions notifying them of their plan to storm the town.
Four banks in Nsukka came under heavy attack by the notorious Sunday Ogbodo alias Ngwu Egere Omu-led robbery gang onÂ 17 July, last year, during which several millions of naira was stolen and the then Divisional Police Officer, DPO, for Nsukka, was killed,Â while the police station was destroyed by the gang.Â Some policemen were also wounded in the incident.
Those who went to various banks to transact business as early as 8 a.m. yesterday, were turned back by security men,Â who told them that the banks would not open for business owingÂ to security report on the alleged plans by the armed robbers to attackÂ financial institutions in the town.
The robbery scare, Vanguard learnt, followed a major attack on five banks at Okigwe in Imo State last week,Â where the hoodlums who were armed with sophisticated weapons, overpowered the police and carted away millions of naira in an operation that lasted for about an hour.
Following refusal of the banks to admit customers, rumours about the security threat quickly spread round the town, forcing traders and shop owners within the ever-busy Market Road, Nsukka to close their shops.Â Â Â Reports said policemen were deployed to strategic locations to conduct search on vehicles as part of security measures to forestall the robbery attack but the banks and some business outfits within the area refused to open their doors to customers.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Ebere Amaraizu said when contacted on the development yesterday, that the alarm raised over imminent security breach was false but added that the police was firmly on ground to checkmate the activities of men of the underworld in the town.