By Ike Uchechukwu, Calabar
Suspected militants numbering about 30, on Wednesday, attacked a convoy of Macmahon staff at Idundun Bridge, in Cross River, at about 5:30 am, killing one driver and kidnapping five others.
Vanguard learned that the deceased who was driving one of the Toyota Hilux (AKD 568 DS) was shot to death by the militants who later kidnapped three expatriates, one Supervisor and a driver of one other vehicle in the convoy.
According to our investigation, Macmahom staff, a contractor to Larfage Holcim were on their way to Mfamosing (Larfage plant in Akamkpa) when they were ambushed by about 30 suspected militants killing one driver on the spot.
An eyewitness who spoke with Vanguard, at the scene of the incident said two SUVs and two other vehicles were part of the convoy that was attacked.
His words:” It was a convoy of four vehicles including two SUVs the militants opened fire on. They ambushed them and killed Mathew on the spot. One of the expertrates hid under the vehicle and they didn’t see him because it was still a bit dark,”
“They also took one of the drivers, Mr. Owen, then one supervisor and three white guys and it was like they had a boat by the beach already waiting for them,” the source revealed.
Another eyewitness told Vanguard that the militants were battle ready and willing the demolish any obstacle adding, “When the lead driver approached the militants, because he was on speed, they taught he wont stop so they opened fire on his vehicle and killed him before they took the white men away. Infact, those militants were fierce and battle ready. They were heavily armed to demolish any obstacle and the security men attached to them (expatriates) scampered
When contacted, the Communications Director, Larfage Holcim, Mrs. Viola Graham Douglas in a text message to Vanguard confirmed that one of their contractors (Macmahon) informed them that a security incident occurred on the road from Calabar.
Her text read: “One of our contractors Macmahon, has informed us that a security incident has occurred on the road from Calabar involving some of their employees. Macmahon is working with Security Agencies to resolve this situation.”
When Vanguard contacted the State Police Public Relations Officer, Irene Ubgo, she confirmed that the incident actually took place and investigations were ongoing.