The lingering security crisis in Akwa Ibom State is taking a new dimension, following the resurgence of a house-to-house raid in some parts of Uyo, the State Capital.
Our Correspondent gathered that gunmen at about 2:30am, Monday, in a coordinated operation that lasted about two hours, attacked residents of Itu, Urua Ekpa and Idak Okpo Roads in Uyo.
Some residents who spoke with our Correspondent, said that random gunshots were heard at Itu Road in the wee hours of Sunday evening, revealing that the six-man gang later arrived at a certain residence, a few minutes after 2am and raided one house after another, carting away valuable items.
A former Youth Leader in one of the affected areas, simply identified as “Emma”, pointed out that although no casualties were recorded, some residents, expecially students of the University of Uyo were assaulted during the attack.
While the incident have been reported to the Police, he said plans were under way to resuscitate vigilante groups in the affected areas.
While narrating the incident, he said, “I heard gunshots at Itu Road early last night, but I thought it was from the Police since they like coming to scare away bad boys. I was not aware of the attack until around 4am when a friend called on phone to inform me.
“I immediately called another friend at Urua Ekpa Road. It was then that I became aware that they had attacked a storey building and other compounds in his area, but from the information I have, the robbers are just people living around us, that’s why they could know the nocks and crannies of all the compounds they operated. I’ve not heard if anyone was shot or injured, but I’m told that some female students of Uniuyo were assaulted”, he narrated.
A Student of the University of Uyo residing in one of the affected areas who would not want her name mentioned on print, also narrated that the hoodlums carted away cash sums, mobile phones, laptops, iPads and other valuables, revealing that some of her friends were forced to reveal the Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) of their ATM Cards.
The Final Year Student of the Institution said distressed calls were made to the Police Quick Response Squad situated at the University’s main gate, but pointed out the team arrived around 5:15am after the attack.
Another victim of the attack, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the armed robbers were unmasked, adding that after he gave them all the money he had, they threatened to kill him if he did not give more. He added that his wife was hit with the butt of a gun by one of the robbers.
“They had almost removed the window’s burglar-proofs, when my wife woke up, told them that she would open the door and did so. We gave them all the money we had so that they would not harm us. But they told me to bring more money or they would kill me. I said there was no money and they pointed their gun at me, but my wife confronted them and she was hit with a gun butt”, he said.
Efforts to reach the Public Relations Officer, Akwa Ibom State Police Command, DSP Odiko MacDon proved abortive as he was neither responding to calls nor text messages sent to his phone.