Two killed, many injured as unidentified gunmen storm Imo market
Charles Nwoke, Owerri, Nigeria
February 4, 2021
No fewer than two persons have been reportedly killed and many others wounded following the invasion of unknown gunmen on Wednesday, at Afor Awo market in Awo Omamma community in the Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State.
It was gathered that at least six persons sustained various degrees of gunshot injuries, while many others sustained injuries from stampede as the gangsters constantly shot their gun while pursuing a man believed to be their gang member in the densely populated local market.
The unfortunate incident compelled traders in the market to quickly close their shops, scampering for their safety.
Residents said that a five-year-old boy was found dead after the horrendous attack in the market.
A motorcycle spare parts owner whose shop is in the market simply identified as Emeka, died late Wednesday night in a hospital where he was rushed to as a result of the bullet wounds sustained.
It was learned that the attack came as a result of a booty sharing that went bad.
Residents said the hoodlums numbering three had embarked on a kidnap operation earlier this year, but one of them popularly identified as Orjiwuagu from Umuifa, Ubachima Awo Omamma, escaped with the millions of Naira collected as ransom from their victim.
He was said to have used part of the money to purchase a Lexus car, started the construction of a house, and living large within the community.
His gang members traced him to the village, but upon sighting him, he drove towards Afor Awo Market where thousands of traders were trading.
He was said to have stopped at the market as his gang members gave him a very hot chase. He then ran into the market for protection, though with bullet wounds.
One of the community sources narrated, “Based on what I witnessed, the guy being chased and his gang went for kidnap or robbery operation which went fine. The guy, out of greed, took the money paid to them as ransom and ran away.
“Today(Wednesday), they saw him and started chasing him all the way from Ubachima Village. He came out at the Afor Market and wanted to drive to the junction, unfortunately, they double-crossed him and started shooting.
“He ran into the market and that was when bullets started hitting people.
“The most painful death was that of a boy of five years. He was the only son of his father,” he added.
The Umo State Police Command’s Spokesman, Orlando Ikeokwu, when contacted said that he had not received any formal report concerning the incident.