Nembe violence: Bayelsa govt. links shootout to upcoming guber poll



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The Bayelsa government on Sunday linked Saturday’s shootout between the police and armed youths in Nembe-Basambri to the forthcoming Nov. 11 governorship election in the state.

Chief Ayibaina Duba, Bayelsa State Commissioner for Information, Orientation and Strategy, disclosed this in a statement he issued on Sunday in Yenogoa.

The statement said the state government was of the “strong suspicion“ that the incident was not unconnected with the forthcoming poll in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that hoodlums, believed to be terrorising the Basambri settlement in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa, engaged a police team deployed to the area in a gun duel forcing the residents to scamper to safety.

The statement expressed the government’s displeasure over the shootings saying “it created a serious sense of insecurity, panic and fear among the people of the community.

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“Government will continue to work with the police and its sister agencies to ensure that the perpetrators of this dastardly act are brought to book.

“The Bayelsa State Government calls on the Inspector General of Police to cause an immediate investigation aimed at unravelling the identity of these criminals and their sponsors who have continued to undermine public peace in Nembe.

“It is time to stop handling the tormentors of the Nembe people with a kid glove,” the statement said.

The statement urged the police high command to be on top of the situation without further delay and unveil the perpetrators.

NAN learnt that a joint police tactical team from the Police Headquarters and the Police Command in Bayelsa conducted the operation in Nembe on Saturday.

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SP Asinim Butswat, police spokesperson in Bayelsa, however, dismissed the rumours making the rounds that the operation was carried out by armed youths in police uniform.

Butswat told NAN on telephone on Sunday evening that the operation was duly authorised and a cache of arms and ammunition was recovered by the team.

“There was no issue at all; the operation was professionally handled by men of the command and a special team from Abuja. They made arrests and recovered arms and the suspects have been taken to Abuja.

“The police cannot tolerate the stockpiling of arms in that area,” Butswat said.

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