By Chimaobi Nwaiwu
Nnewi—One person was, yesterday, killed and over 10 persons injured when gunmen numbering over 20 invaded New City Atoji Housing Estate, Nkwelle Ezunaka, Oyi Local Government Area, Anambra State, and attacked security men attached to the estate and some residents.
According to an eyewitness, the gunmen invaded the estate at about 1.30p.m. and on sighting over seven security men attached to the estate, opened fire on them and other residents of the area, leading to a stampede.
Thereafter, the gunmen were said to have left the estate.
When the situation became calm and people started coming out from hiding, the lifeless body of one of the security men, identified as Friday Atta, was found with bullets wounds.
Another security man, Uche Kalu, whose legs and waist were riddled with bullets, was found in a pool of his blood, then rushed to Multi Care Hospital, Onitsha.
According to an eyewitness, “this place was like a war zone. The gunmen came with assorted type of guns. I could see from where I was hiding an AK-47 riffle and the security men were not armed because they have been told not to carry guns.
“I could not count the number of those wounded, but I am sure they were over 20 and this is not the first time gunmen were attacking us in this place.”
However addressing newsmen yesterday, after reporting the attack to the 33 Police Station Onitsha, Chairman of New City Atoji Estate, Mr. Uche Okeke, flanked by his Vice Chairman, Mr. Christopher Magbo and other landlords and residents of the area, said yesterday’s killing was the third time their security men had been killed and residents of the area injured.
“I was in my office yesterday when, around 2p.m., our security commander called me to say youths from Osile Ogbunike invaded the estate, killing one of them and we reported the matter to the Police.
“The corpse was evacuated by the Police and deposited at Apex Mortuary Nkwelle Ezunaka.
“We have been living in fears since we started moving into our estate. We bought the land from Umuonuorah Amuche village in Nkwelle Ezunaka, but since 2014 and 2015 the youths of Osile have been disturbing us, saying that they own the land.
“We met our landlords and they showed us the judgment of the Supreme Court on the land in their favour, and said anybody laying claim to the land should come to them instead of harassing us.
“In 2016, the commander of our security outfit, Mr. Sunday was abducted and killed and till date nobody saw his corpse.
“Another security man, David was lured with a girl to a drinking bar and was killed and the matter was reported to Ogidi Police Station, but nothing came out of the matter.”
When Vanguard contacted Anambra State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Mohammed Haruna, said he had not been informed, but would call the Divisional Police Officer in charge of 33 Police Station for more information about the incident.
Also contacted, the DPO, Janet Mbanefo, confirmed the killing, but said the matter was still being investigated and promised that the Police would brief the press on the matter.