Six persons, including a commercial motorcycle rider, were on Monday killed by gunmen suspected to be cultists in Gwara and Kono-Boue communities, in the Khana Local Government Area of Rivers State.
A resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the gunmen, numbering about seven, arrived in the community in the morning and shot continuously. They later left unchallenged.
He disclosed that later in the day, the assailants stormed neighbouring Kono-Boue, where a motorcycle rider and his two passengers ran into them and were shot dead.
The Public Relations Officer, Kono-Boue Community Development Community, Nwibakpo Golden, said some villagers ran into a bush to avoid being hit by bullets.
He said, “Unknown gunmen invaded Gwara community, killing about three persons. They also went to Kono-Boue, killing three there as well. A motorcycle rider and the persons that were with him were killed.
“They were coming from a thanksgiving service when they ran into the gunmen and were shot dead.”
Asked if the security agencies were notified of the incident, Golden said he personally called the Bori Divisional Police Officer, adding that by the time his team got to the scene, the hoodlums had fled.
He said the absence of a functional police station and the bad road in the area worsened the security situation in the community.
“As we speak now, some people are hiding in the bush. The way they (gunmen) came, they were not looking at anybody. They were just shooting.
“The governor of Rivers State once came to this place and promised that there will be a police station here. Kono-Boue is a large community. We are still hoping that he will fulfil his promise.
“Secondly, the road there is bad. If they fix the road, the police can easily access the area anytime we call them,” Golden said.
A spokesman for the state police command, Nnamdi Omoni, confirmed three deaths.
Omoni said the state Commissioner of Police, Friday Eboka, had ordered an investigation into the incident.
He said, “I can confirm the cult clash in Khana where three persons were killed. They are Namene Kialede (33), Muaka Ikara (42) and Kingsley Kponee. No arrest yet, but efforts are seriously on to arrest the perpetrators.”