Troops of 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, conducting “Exercise Golden Dawn” in the South East, have neutralised four gunmen of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra/Eastern Security Network, IPOB/ESN, at Nnobi in Anambra.
The director, Army Public Relations, Onyema Nwachukwu, disclosed this in a statement on Saturday in Abuja.
Mr Nwachukwu, a brigadier-general, said the gunmen were overpowered in a fierce encounter with troops at Nnobi Junction, Idemili South Local Government Area of Anambra, on Friday.
He said the assailants had earlier attacked personnel of security agencies deployed at Ekwulobia Round About in Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State.
He added that troops swiftly mobilised to the scene and subsequently embarked on pursuit of the criminals along Nnewi-Nnobi road.
According to him, troops made contact with the fleeing gunmen and engaged them in a fire fight, neutralising four of the criminals.
“The gallant troops also recovered two AK-47 Rifles, one GALIL Ace 5.56 x 45 Iwi Gun, one Avofeng Hand held radio and one Black Highlander jeep.
“Sadly, a personnel of one of the security agencies paid the supreme price,” he said.
Mr Nwachukwu also disclosed that the troops had in another operation, foiled another attack by IPOB/ESN gunmen at Umunze Checkpoint, in Orumba South Local Government Area of the state.
He said the vigilant troops overwhelmed the attackers in the shootout that ensued, forcing them to take to their heels, abandoning, one Pump Action gun with nine cartridges, a Ford vehicle and four motorcycles.
According to him, the Nigerian army notes that the recent attacks are part of proscribed IPOB/ESN plan to instill fear in the public and sabotage the forthcoming Anambra State Governorship Election.
“Members of the public are reassured that the Nigerian army, sister services and other security agencies will not relent in resolutely confronting all criminals intents against the citizenry and national interest.
“Law abiding citizens are enjoined to continue to go about their daily activities without any fear.
“They are also encouraged to report any unusual activity observed across Anambra State to the nearest security post,” he said