The remains of Smallwitch and his deputy
... Also allegedly killed a Police Inspector of anti-Cultism Unit and a School Headmistress
Allegedly abducted and held two policemen, boat driver for 3 months
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Ekeni-Ore-Owaji Titus Sunday, a notorious kidnapper and leader of a cult gang and and his second-in-Command who were alleged to be responsible for the abduction and holding of two policemen and a boat driver in captivity for three months met their Waterloo on Saturday as they were killed in a joint operation involving the Police and the Army in Asarama Community, Andoni Local Government area of Rivers.
The news of the killing of the notorious kidnapper, popularly known as “Smallwitch”, triggered celebration in Andoni Local Government area, especially among residents of Asarama community, many of who who had abandoned their homes as a result of the criminal activities of his gang.
It was gathered that the decimation the gang leader and his deputy followed intelligence tracking of their activities in the past few months and information provided to security operatives by members of the local community where they have been operating.
It was also gathered that the joint team of the Police and the Army began the operation that led to the killing of Smallwitch and his deputy on Friday, but he was finally gunned down on Saturday, March 2020.
It will be recalled that members of Asarama Community had on Friday raised alarm that gunmen in Police and Army uniforms had invaded the community.
But Spokesperson of the Rivers Police Command, DSP Nnamdi Omoni, who confirmed the joint operation said security operatives involved in the joint security operation have been in Asarama community in search of the notorious kidnapper since the evening of Friday, March 6.
He said the notorious kidnapper and his gang engaged the security forces in a gun duel, but were eventually overpowered by members of the Joint Task force,
He also alleged that the notorious kidnapper was responsible for many heinous crimes in that area, including the kidnapping of two Policemen and their boat driver last year as well as the recent exchange of gun fire between the Police and some hoodlums and the killing of a school headmistress along the Ogoni, Andoni Opobo/Nkoro Unity Road last month.
According to him, the gand led by “Smallwitch” was also responsible for the killing of a Police Inspector attached to the the anti-Cultism unit of the Rivers State Police Command.
The Police Command Spokesman warned hoodlums to desist from criminal acts or leave the state as the Nigeria Police will do everything possible to get rid of them.
On the issue of burning of many houses in Asarama Community, Omoni, claimed that the notorious kidnapper and members of his gang still at large were responsible as they may have been furious that members of the community gave them out.
Items recovered from Smallwitch and his second in Command includes: five magazines, one AK47 containing about 120 live ammunition and a wooden gun.
Our Correspondent recalls that two Police Officers, ASP Godwin Anwuri and Sergeant Gift Ojimini alongside their boat driver, Festus Friday, were abducted at Ngo waterside, headquarters of Andoni Local Government Area of Rivers State and were held in captivity for almost three months.
They were abducted on October 8, 2019, while on patrol along the Ngo River in Andoni Local Government area, but set free ON January 9, 2020.
Three expatriates working for a construction company involved in rehabilitation of Andoni-Opobo-Nkoro-Ogoni Unity road were also abducted at along the Andoni stretch of the road.
They were released after spending over a month in captivity despite threat by Governor Nyesom Wike to sanction members of Andoni traditional rulers if the expatriates were not released unconditionally and promptly immediately after they were abducted.