Declare 12 members wanted
Men of the Imo State police command on Friday said they raided an arms factory suspected to belong to the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its militant wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN) at Uba Umuaka in Njaba Local Government Area of the state.
This is as the authorities of the Nigeria Police Force on Friday declared 12 members of the separatist group wanted over alleged killings in the South-East zone of the country, particularly the recent one in Isu-Aniocha, Awka North Local Government Area of Anambra State.
It was learnt that a suspect was arrested during the raid in Imo.
The Imo police spokesperson, CSP Mike Abattam, in a statement noted that the operation was a result of a “painstaking investigation.”
According to the statement, the command’s tactical teams, following credible intelligence received on April 4, uncovered the hideout of the proscribed group, where they manufacture improvised explosive devices used in attacking police stations and government facilities in the state.
“The police operatives immediately mobilised to the hideout of the terror group and raided the camp. In the course of the raid, one Simeon Onigbo, 50, was arrested.
“During an on-the-spot interrogation, the suspect admitted being the manufacturer of most of the improvised explosive devices used in attacking police stations in the state and outside the state,” the statement reads.
The statement added that upon searching the hideout, items recovered included an improvised explosive device, 58 pieces of cannon steel pipe, two chisels, one hammer, and one and a half bags of potassium nitrate, among others.
The police had declared 12 IPOB members wanted over offences of conspiracy, armed robbery, acts of terrorism, kidnapping, cultism, unlawful possession of firearms, burglary, malicious damage, and conduct likely to cause a breach of public peace.
The Force spokesman, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, explained in a statement that the police had earlier secured a court order to declare the suspects wanted.
He said the suspects were all male from the zone, with ages ranging from 25 to 55 years. He added that they were all natives of Isu-Aniocha in Anambra State, with heights between 1.5m and 1.7m.
Adejobi listed their names as Edward Okoye (Stone); Donatus Okeke; Onyemazi Ngini; Onyebuchi Nwekeizu Okoye; Nonso Eboh; Chukwuka Onyibor; Chukwujekwu Anaekeokwu; Chuka Ilodigwe; Chinedu Nwoye Okoye; Nonso Awusionwu Obinna; Cosmos Okonkwo and Chukwujekwu Okoye.