Armed Ijaw youths, immigration officers clash in Warri

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  • Two NIS operatives lose rifles to suspects

As tension continues to mount over the incessant crisis between Ogbe-Ijoh and Aladja communities in Warri South West and Udu local government areas of Delta State, respectively, gunmen suspected to be Ijaw youths have clashed with the operatives of the Nigeria Immigration Service in the waterways, injuring one officer they had allegedly earlier disarmed.
Local sources disclosed to The Point that the youths, chanting ‘Ijaw war songs’ and shooting sporadically, had at about 6:40pm on Saturday, intercepted the NIS patrol team,
which was on the river along the creeks of Fegenegbene community, opposite Ogbe-Ijoh while heading towards Warri Main Market.
Two service riffles of the NIS officers were reportedly snatched by the youths in the
ensuing gun battle. It was gathered that one of the operatives of the Marine Police team, which later rushed to the scene to rescue the NIS officers, also sustained a gunshot injury on his hand.
A source said that the quick intervention of the Marine Police Post in Warri saved the three NIS officers and a civilian speedboat pilot from being abducted by the youths numbering about ten.
One of the victims of the attack, who pleaded anonymity, said, “At about 6:40pm, our patrol team was heading towards Warri Main Market, when armed youths shot sporadically at our boat. They demanded that we follow them after disarming us. They accused us that we were Urhobo people and they would kill us.

Two service riffles of the NIS officers were reportedly snatched by the youths in the ensuing gun battle

Uba Group

“As we were arguing, one of the youths confirmed that our pilot (boat driver) was an
Urhobo boy and they wanted to kill him. Luckily enough, he jumped into the water. Our
team leader, an assistant superintendent of NIS, was hit with butts of the gunmen’s riffles.

They also engaged operatives of the Marine Police. One of them was shot on his hand before they fled.” When contacted, spokesperson of the Delta State Command of the
NIS, Joy Obikwe, claimed that she was not aware of the incident and pleaded with our correspondent to give her few minutes to get details of the attack.
But as at the time of filing this story, she had yet to pick calls put to her phone. The festering crisis betweenOgbe-Ijoh and Aladja communities in Delta State has heightened the state of insecurity in Warri and its environsin the past months.

All schools in the locality have been shut down as a result of the month-long crisis, depriving students the opportunity of sitting for their second term examinations.