Nigerian Soldiers Flee As Unknown Gunmen Enforce Sit-at-home In Enugu, Imo, Burn Tricycle
A tricycle was on Monday morning burnt by unknown gunmen who were allegedly enforcing the sit-at-home order of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Enugu State.
The gunmen were said to have intercepted the tricycle at Amechi Road, beside Romchi filling station in Enugu.
SaharaReporters gathered that soldiers who were called to calm the situation fled after a gun battle with the gunmen.
“The gunmen asked the rider why he refused to remain indoors. The owner and his passengers were unhurt. The Keke (commercial tricycle) was carrying passengers. They forced the occupants out, collected their phones, and set the Keke ablaze.
“When Nigerian soldiers came for the distress call, the gunmen engaged them and they fled. The army zoomed off from unknown gunmen around St. Paul’s Primary School, Achara Layout, Enugu,” a source told SaharaReporters.
Also, gunmen suspected to be members of IPOB have stormed the streets and markets of Owerri, the Imo state capital to ensure residents stay indoors even though the pro-Biafra group has kicked against such enforcement.
There was pandemonium in the town as gunmen forced traders to close shops.
In a report by Daily Trust, motorists quickly made U-turns while many passengers disembarked from their vehicles.
The confusion, which started at Wethral Road, spread to neighbouring Mbaise Road, Douglas Road, and Naze along the Aba- Owerri Road.
Some traders at the multi-million Alaba International Market and Naze Cluster markets were said to have closed their shops and locked the gates leading to the market.
Hoodlums took advantage of the situation to scatter some wares already displayed by shop owners who had fled.
Schools were closed while parents rushed to pick up their children. It was not immediately known what actually happened, but it was gathered that the gunmen had arrived Owerri from Aba ostensibly to enforce the order in Imo.
On August 9, IPOB started the enforcement of the lockdown.
The sit-at-home order is to protest against the arrest and detention of IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
However, on August 13, IPOB stated that the Ghost Monday would no longer hold every Monday based on the directive from its leader, Kanu who said it should be observed only on the day he appears in court.
Despite the suspension, some unknown gunmen in the South-East still enforce the order, preventing people from opening shops and engaging in commercial activities.
Recently, IPOB’s spokesman, Emma Powerful, said anyone caught enforcing the order henceforth, would be dealt with.
Over the past weeks, unidentified gunmen have targeted famous people in the South-East.
Most of the attacks have been blamed on the members of IPOB, whose leader, Nnamdi Kanu, is in detention over charges of treason.
In June, Kanu was arrested in Kenya and extradited to Nigeria to face treason charges.
He was subsequently arraigned and brought before Binta Nyako, a Judge of the Federal High Court in Abuja, who asked him to be remanded in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Kanu is facing charges bordering on treasonable felony instituted against him at the court in response to his agitation for the Republic of Biafra.
He was granted bail in April 2017 on health grounds but skipped bail after disregarding some of the conditions given to him by the court.
On July 26, Justice Nyako adjourned his trial till October 21, owing to the failure of the Nigerian government to produce him in court.