Inmates released as attackers blow up Owerri prison & police headquarters
Inmates released as attackers blow up Owerri prison & police headquarters. The number of inmates who escaped is yet to be released says the police representative.
According to reports on social media, a prison facility and police investigations department in Owerri was set on fire by unidentified attackers in an overnight operation on Monday the 5th of April, 2021.
Multimedia and witnesses’ accounts on social media explained that the attackers struck the prison and police department shortly after midnight, freeing an unconfirmed number of inmates and suspects. Serious gunfire also rang through the area, with an account saying hundreds of inmates might have been released.
In addition, senior government officials were asked to hide in a place due to the closeness of the scene to the government house.
It is uncertain how many prisoners escaped, but Amnesty International said over the weekend that Owerri Correctional Centre had 2,156 inmates as against its installed capacity of 548 people.
The level of destruction and casualty figures were not immediately available, but pictures shared on Twitter showed serious smokes coming from what posters said were the scenes of the attack that lasted for over two hours.
The Imo police spokesman Godson Orlando said he was unaware of the violence, hours after reports had spread across social media with residents in different sections of Owerri reporting hearing loud gunshots and explosions.
“I am also just hearing it from you now,” Mr. Orlando, a police superintendent, said. “I will have to wait until later today to find out what transpired.”
The attack came as confrontation intensified between Nigerian security forces and adherents of the IPOB separatist movement across the South-East. Since January, there have been repeated disputes between Nigerian troops and IPOB elements in Imo, Rivers, Abia and Anambra, with both sides denying responsibility for civilian casualties.
Those who are behind the violence and their motive could not be ascertained before this case was reported.
In other news:
Imo prison break: Biafra group hints on reasons for the attack on the Police facility
The Biafra Nations League, BNL has stated that gunmen attacking police stations, officers and prisons may be an expression of anger over the killing, harassment, and extortion by security personnel all over the country.
The group said this while rebuking the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu for assuming that the members of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, and the Eastern Security Network, ESN carried out the attack in Owerri, Imo State.
Ebuta Akor Takon, the Deputy National Leader of BNL, revealed this in Ikom, Cross River State on Monday the 5th of April, 2021, adding that “the IGP concluded without carrying out an investigation.
”Guesswork does not show one’s professionalism,” he said.
The BNL wondered why the IGP has never accused the Fulani herdsmen especially with the recent attacks in Ebonyi State.
BNL said that “gunmen who are attacking officers and prisons might simply be expressing their anger in response to the killings, harassments, and extortion by the security agencies.”
The BNL warned of the major consequences if any pro-Biafra agitators are touched by the government security agencies irrespective of group affiliations.
They said, “the police will end up apprehending innocent people and not the gunmen warning that such actions have consequences.”