It is a bloody day in Benin City as armed robbers shot dead four persons, including a baby, at the New Benin area of the state capital.
Another four sustained different degrees of gunshot wounds as the hoodlums, one of who was allegedly armed with an AK 47 assault rifle, shot sporadically into the air to disperse residents.
This, however, forced traders and those in the neighbourhood to scamper for safety.
Panicky traders and residents of the adjourning Owoseni, Yoruba, Upper Lawani, and other neighbouring streets hurriedly closed their shops.
According to an eyewitness, the robbers had stormed the popular New Benin Market, robbing from shop to shop before fleeing, but were chased by some brave traders and neighbours through the streets as they shot intermittently to scare people.
The robbers reportedly shot dead a grinder at the market along Owoseni /Yoruba streets junction, while the two-year-old infant was shot dead right on the mother’s back and the remaining two along the adjourning streets.
Blood flowed freely on the streets as some policemen from the Rapid Response Squad joined in the manhunt, as the fleeing robbers reportedly snatched a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) with which they speedily escaped.
The state Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, Nwabuzor Chidi, when contacted, said he had not been briefed on the incident at press time.
Two persons were confirmed dead in clashes between party supporters in Bakura Local Government Area of Zamfara State ahead of Saturday’s by-election in the area.
Consequently, Governor Bello Matawalle has imposed a 24-hour curfew in Bakura and Talata Mafara local government areas.
The by-election to fill the Bakura constituency slot in the state House of Assembly is one of the six senatorial and nine state constituencies such polls are taking place in some of the states today.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) was thrown into shock on Friday after a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja and the Court of Appeal, in separate rulings, disqualified Mr. Chukwuma Francis Ibezim and Chief Ifeanyi Araraume from the race.
Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State and former House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara will also be putting their political strength to test today in the Baraza Dass Constituency by-election into the state House of Assembly.
The two of them were allies in the run-up to the 2019 elections only for Dogara to dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in July to return to the APC.
Governor Matawalle said in Gusau, the Zamfara State capital, that the imposition of curfew was meant to safeguard lives and property.
Government, he declared, would not fold its arms and watch people engage in a breach of the public peace.
He accused unnamed politicians of taking advantage of political rallies ahead of the by-election in Bakura to foment trouble.
He said that apart from the two casualties, six other persons were injured in the clash.
A resident of Awosuru Area of Osogbo, Osun State, John Amoo, has reportedly stabbed a co-tenant, identified as Oyeyemi Adeleke, to death.
The suspect, it was learnt, committed the crime during an argument with Adeleke.
But the police could not arrest Amoo as he was also found dead. It was however unclear what led to the death of the suspect.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state confirmed the incident to our correspondent on Friday, adding that Adeleke was rushed to the General Hospital, Asubiaro, where he was confirmed dead.
She added, “But mysteriously, the suspect was also found dead a few hours later. The suspect also damaged some things before he eventually passed on. The police have commenced investigation into the matter.
“Amoo, from the information available to us, was involved in an argument with the other man, and in the course of that, he stabbed Adeleke in the stomach, which caused his death.”
The Defence Headquarters says the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole has eliminated scores of terrorists in multiple air strikes on Sambisa forest.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche made this known in a statement on Friday in Abuja.
Enenche said the air raids were conducted at Bone and Mudu in Yale-Kumshe axis as well as ‘S’ Region in Sambisa Forest on Dec. 1 and Dec. 2.
He said the raid was carried out after series of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions.
According to him, the intelligence reports revealed the three locations were being used as staging areas where the terrorists store their weapons and logistics items as well as plan and launch attacks.