Bandits suspected to be herdsmen yesterday attacked soldiers who responded to a distress call over a kidnap incident along the Enugu –Port Harcourt expressway
Pointblanknews.com gathered that the bandits kidnapped passengers of three buses into the bush and allegedly set the Army patrol van on fire.
A passenger, whose bus narrowly missed being kidnapped, disclosed that more buses and passengers would have been attacked as the three buses mistook the bandits for policemen on the expressway.
He said the situation caused motorists coming from the Enugu and Okigwe areas to stop by the roadside to avoid being attacked by the gunmen.
“The kidnappers blocked the area between Leru junction and Ihube and kidnapped three buses filled with passengers. The drivers mistook the kidnappers for policemen at the checkpoint. Soldiers were alerted to the blockage by the kidnappers, but the kidnappers started shooting at them and burnt their patrol van. Motorists abandoned their vehicles and ran away. There were over 100 abandoned vehicles on both lanes of the expressway,” he said.
It was gathered that there are three military checkpoints between Leru junction and Ihube while the bandits daily block the expressway and kidnap passengers into the bush. Youths of the communities located along the expressway had protested the inability of the soldiers to stop the kidnapping incidents in the area and asked that the Army leave the area.
Efforts to get the reaction of the Public Relations Officer, 14 Brigade, Ohafia, Lt. Innocent Omale, was unsuccessful as at the time of filing this report.