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2 dead, houses burnt as youths and vigilante clash in Rivers

2 dead, houses burnt as youths and vigilante clash in Rivers

Two individuals are feared dead and two houses have been set ablaze following a violent clash between local youths and vigilante members in Egbeda Community, Emohua Local Government Area of Rivers State.

According to vanguard reports, five members of the Egbeda Security Planning and Advisory Committee (ESPAC) have been arrested by the State Police Command in connection with the shootings and killings.

A community source, who could not identify one of the deceased, named the other victim as Mr. Oregi, a resident of Omuipo community in Egbeda Town. The confrontation occurred as youths marched through the community, protesting the appointment of a particular community leader as liaison officer (CLO) to a construction company working on the Egbeda-Elele road project.

Witnesses said the youths had been warned by local vigilante members not to proceed with the protest. Despite this, the youths continued with their peaceful demonstration. The source, who wished to remain anonymous, reported that during the protest, ESPAC members intercepted the demonstrators at Egbeda roundabout, instructing them to disperse. The youths, asserting their right to peaceful protest, refused to comply.

The situation escalated when an ESPAC member known as Muffi, allegedly infuriated, opened fire on the protesters, resulting in the deaths of Oregi and another unidentified individual.

Following the incident, officers from the Egbeda Police Division responded to a distress call and arrested Muffi along with four other ESPAC members. In retaliation, some unidentified youths reportedly attacked and burned down the homes of the ESPAC commander and another member.

The Rivers State Police Command spokesperson, Grace Iringe-Koko, a superintendent of police, has yet to confirm the incident.

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.

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