A yet to be identified soldier was killed in the early hours of Monday during a clash between members of a militant group and the men of the Nigeria Army at Ajakpa town in Ese Odo Local Government Area of Ondo State.
The soldier was attached to the Operation Delta Safe in Delta State. It was gathered that many other soldiers were injured in the clash.
A member of the militant group identified as a Ossy Ibori was also killed by the soldiers. He was suspected to be the leader of the group which had been terrorising the riverine areas of Ondo, Edo, Delta and Lagos States in recent times.
According to a source, the clash occurred at about 1am on Monday while the soldiers were on patrol in the creeks to flush out the armed militants from their hideouts.
The source said, ” Immediately the militants saw the soldiers from their hideout, they opened fire on them. During the gun duel, a soldier and a member of the militant group were killed, while many soldiers and the militants were injured.”
The incident was also confirmed by the army in a statement issued by the Coordinator, Joint Media Campaign Center of the military , Major Abubakar Abdullah.
He said the army lost one of his men and three others were injured, noting that the body of the late militant leader was identified by the residents of the community.
He stated that the hoodlums had also carried out several attacks at some other communities like Safarogbo and Balowo areas of the Ese Odo council area of Ondo State. .
The statement read in part, ” Troops of Operation Delta Safe, in line with its mandate to rid Niger Delta of all criminal acts of militancy and kidnappings, in a special operation repelled an attack on troops location around Ajakpa community in the creeks of Southern Ondo State last night.
“The attack was led by one notorious gang leader, Ossy Ibori, with a hideout at Ajakpa, Ese-Odo Local Government Area of Ondo State.
” The leader was gunned down during the gun duel, along with some of his gang members. His body was identified by some of the locals in the area. While search for other criminals who jumped into the water with gunshot wounds is ongoing, troops had recovered one AK-47 Rifle and 4 Magazines.”
Abdullah added that the injured soldiers had been taking to the military hospital medical attention.
The Public Relations Officer of the Ondo State Police Command, Mr. Femi Joseph said the indecent had not been reported officially at the command but he was aware of it.
The PPRO said, ” We learnt about the incident but it has not been officially reported at the command. We also learnt that the sister security agents are already there to restore nomalcy in the area.
” We were told that gunboats have been taken to the area and I believe peace has been restored.”