Six persons, including four policemen and two kidnappers, were killed on Tuesday in Ubima, Ikwerre Local Government Area of Rivers State in a gun duel between the two groups. Kidnappers and operatives of the Rives State Police Command had clashed at the Ubima-Omerelu link road following a distress call to rescue four kidnap victims. Our correspondent gathered that following a tip off, the police stormed the area to rescue the hostages. It was also learnt that the kidnap gang opened fire on the security operatives when they entered the area.
A resident of the area, Miss Miracle (surname withheld), told our correspondent that the police had rescued the kidnap victims before the kidnappers, who allegedly belong to a cult group terrorising the area, ambushed the security men. Miracle, who said that four policemen and two cultists died during the shooting, noted that the development caused tension in the community. She also stated that policemen and soldiers had taken over Ubima, Umuanwa and Omere communities in the local government in search of the hoodlums. When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Omoni Nnamdi, a deputy superintendent, however, said that only two policemen lost their lives.