Delta community razed after killing of soldiers in communal clash

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Several houses in the coastal and rustic Okuoma community, in the Bomadi LGA of Delta state, were on fire, hours after 16 military personnel on a peacekeeping mission were killed.

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Tukur Gusau, director of information at the defence headquarters, in a statement on Saturday, said the army personnel — comprising a lieutenant ​colonel, two majors, one captain, and 12 soldiers — were killed by youths on Thursday.

“The troops of 181 Amphibious Battalion, Bomadi Local Government Area of Delta State, while on a peace mission to Okuoma community in Bomadi LGA of Delta State were surrounded by some community youths and killed on Thursday, 14 March 2024,” Gusau said.

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“The unfortunate incident occurred when the troops responded to a distress call after the communal crisis between the Okuoma and Okoloba communities both in Delta State.

“The reinforcement team led by the Commanding officer was also attacked, leading to the death of the Commanding officer, two Majors, one Captain, and 12 Soldiers.”

General Christopher Musa, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), has ordered an immediate investigation into the incident.

In a video posted by Channels Television, black smoke could be seen billowing from some buildings in the community, as flames flickered in the distance.

A voice in the background could be heard saying: “Your eye go clear well well, I swear to God. No worry.”

Latest reports say 14 of the “beheaded” corpses have been recovered, with the entrails of some ripped out.

Some residents of the community have also fled, for fear of reprisals from the army.

Gusau was not immediately available for a reaction to this story.

Sheriff Oborevwori, governor of Delta, has condemned the incident, promising to “fish out” the perpetrators.

 

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