SP Geoffrey Ogbonna, the Police Public Relations Officer for Abia Command, confirmed to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday that 29 detainees escaped from the Umuahia Central Police Station’s cell after overpowering the guard on duty.
Narrating the incident, Ogbonna said that one of the detainees had appealed to the guard (name withheld) to assist him with water to flush the toilet.
He said that unknown to the guard, the detainees had conspired to attack him in order to escape from detention.
“This happened around 9.00 p.m. on Saturday,’’ he said.
He added that as soon as the guard brought the water and opened the iron bar, the suspects rushed out, overpowered him and took to their heels.
The command’s spokesman said that 20 of the suspects were rearrested that night and in the early hours of Sunday.
He expressed the confidence that the remaining nine escapees would be rearrested and appealed for assistance from Umuahia residents.
“I appeal to members of the public to be vigilant and report any strange face or faces in dirty attires in their neighbourhood to the police.
“The suspects had dirty attires they wore in the cell and may be looking for where to steal people’s clothes in order to look decent to be able to escape from the town,’’ Ogbonna said.