In Orsumoghu, Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State, Nigerian Army troops seized a suspected hideaway of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its militant arm, ESN.
Gunmen have been terrorizing people of the region and security agencies from the hideaway, according to army spokesperson Onyema Nwachukwu, who revealed this in a statement on Monday.
During clearance operations in the border areas of Anambra and Imo States, he said troops encountered “strong resistance” from militants.
“They (the shooters) were overcome by the superior firepower of the troops, causing them to flee their hiding place,” he claimed.
Investigations found that the hideout functioned as the operating base for Innocent Obieke, also known as ‘Double Lion,’ the leader of a vigilante group in the area, who was accused of “secretly coordinating the criminal actions of IPOB and ESN” in the areas.
Mr Nwachukwu, a brigadier-general, said, “The suspect is currently on the run as troops have intensified efforts to shut in on him and his cohorts.”
During the operation, 22 pump action rifles, 19 dane guns, six machetes, various mobile phones, a laptop, and one operable Toyota Hilux pick-up truck were recovered.
The army spokeswoman urged the public to continue to provide credible and timely information to the military and other security services that will lead to the arrest of criminals in their region.
IPOB, a group that wants to carve out an independent state of Biafra from the south-east and some portions of the south-south, has been linked to the deadly attacks in both regions.