From PAUL ORUDE, Bauchi
Death toll in the deadly attack launched by gunmen in Azare, Katagum Local Government Area last Sunday has risen to 10.
Eight people were seriously injured when communities in Azare Town and security operatives chased four of the gunmen in the ancient town. In his account of the incident, Bauchi State Commissioner of Police, Mohammed Ladan explained that the four armed men, who attacked Seeds Market Company were gunned down by the security personnel. Ladan said: “The incident started when some gunmen suspected to be armed robbers attacked Seeds Market in Azare around 12:30p.m and robbed some people of their belongings.
They were about to runaway when some good samaritans informed security personnel, both Police, Army and Azare community, who pursued them. In the melee, there was serious exchange of fire which led to the death of the four armed men, some security personnel sustained injuries but I don’t have the detail of causualties, we can get the actual details after investigation.”
The number of casualties was not clear at the time of filing this report, but residents put the number at between 10 and 12, involving six civilians, four armed men and two security personnel, while several people were injured. A community leader, who spoke on condition of anonymity told journalists that 10 people were killed, while a funeral prayer was held for three civilians at the Azare Central Mosque after Magrib Prayer.
He said the bodies of the two security personnel killed and the four armed men gunned down by security men were not brought to the Mosque. But a top security source confirmed that nine people had been confirmed dead while eight persons were injured following the gunfight between security operatives and gunmen suspected to be armed robbers in Azare.
It was reported that hundreds of youths and security operatives engaged in a gun battle with the four gunmen suspected to be armed robbers that attacked a market in Azare last Sunday. Meanwhile, a renowned armed robber, Catcher Ali Kwara has arrested five people suspected to be armed robbers in Azare few hours after the community rose against four armed men and killed them. A top security confirmed the arrest of the five suspects.
He said: “I can confirm to you that five suspects were arrested but I don’t think it is connected with the incident that happened last Sunday. A resident of Azare told Daily Sun that Ali Kwarra sent his boys to Gadau motor station in Azare where suspected armed robbers used to go and eat and arrested five of them last Sunday night. When Contacted, Kwara did not confirm or deny the arrest.
He said: “Just say we have recorded success, when you are celebrating success you will only talk about it, not eye service. The suspects came from outside the state and they stayed for a long time in Azare killing innocent people but they felt the consequences yesterday as all four were killed.” Kwara said they had recovered three Ak 47 riffles from the suspects and commended the communities in Azare for their efforts.