David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka
Two persons said to be members of staff of the Nigeria Correctional Services (NSC), attached to Ekwulobia Prisons in Anambra State have been reportedly killed by unknown gunmen.
The men were said to have been attacked and killed while escorting a van conveying inmates back to the custodial centre from the court after hearing at about 11a.m. yesterday.
Two policemen and three soldiers had also been killed by unknown gunmen the previous day in two locations in the state, with their arms carted away, while a police van was set ablaze.
Meanwhile, THISDAY has gathered that at about 4a.m. yesterday, a police station in the same Ekwulobia was attacked by gunmen but were quickly repelled by men on duty.
Ekwulobia Police Station was among the police stations, which was razed down during the EndSARS protest, but was recently rebuilt.
The Public Relations Officer of Anambra State Command of the Nigeria Correctional Centre, Mr. Francis Ekezie confirmed the attack, saying that the command had been devastated by the news.
A press release by the Anambra State command of the NCS stated, “Gunmen yet to be identified attacked the court duty vehicle of the Nigerian Correctional Service, Anambra State at Nanka while conveying inmates back from court to the Aguata Custodial Centre.
“The attackers killed the Corrections officer and whisked away the inmate being taken back to the Custodial Centre.
“The gun duel that lasted for about 10 minutes was reportedly perpetrated by suspected hoodlums in two vehicles, a Sienna bus and a Hilux pick-up van that trailed the court duty vehicle from the court premises.”
Ekezie said the armed escort put up a gallant resistance, but was unfortunately overpowered by the hoodlums who he said came in their numbers with sophisticated weapons. He said the body of the fallen officer has been deposited in the mortuary.
Also, the spokesperson of the State Police Command, DSP Toochukwu Ikenga confirmed the attack on Ekwulobia police station, but quickly added that the men on duty overpowered the attackers, causing them to flee.