Soludo Attack: Commissioner Kidnapped As Police Confirm Arrest Of Suspect In Anambra
The Anambra State Police Command on Thursday confirmed the abduction of the state’s Commissioner of Public and Utilities, Emeka Ezenwanne.
The state’s police spokesperson, Ikenga Tochukwu, stated that Ezenwanne was abducted during the attack on the former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Charles Soludo, on Wednesday.
The police confirmed that three officers were also shot dead during an encounter with the assailants.
They were confirmed dead at an undisclosed hospital and their bodies have been deposited in the mortuary, the police said.
The police said “The assailants were resisted by security operatives present at the event and in the ensuing gun duel, three police operatives sustained severe gunshot injuries and were later confirmed dead in the hospital, their corpses have been deposited in the mortuary,” the police said.
“Following the incident, the attackers abducted one Engr. Emeka Ezenwanne, Commissioner for Public and Utilities. One person has been arrested in connection with the act.
“The police operatives led by the Command CP, visited the scene and also visited the Former CBN Governor to reinforce the security in his house and the Community”.
The police command also reported that it had arrested a suspect linked to the attack but gave no further information on the development.
This newspaper had reported that the former CBN governor was attacked on Wednesday evening while holding a political meeting at his Isuofia country home.
Anambra Governorship Election
While the recent attack strongly calls for the implementation of more security measures in the state, many have tied the recent attack to early warning signs of violence in the Anambra governorship election.
Soludo is vying for the position of governor under the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, in the forthcoming Anambra governorship election scheduled for November.
Earlier in February, thugs had attacked Valentine Ozigbo, another aspirant of the state’s guber election under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Nnewi during his ‘Walk for Health,’ event.
Ozigbo, before the attack, had been organising the event in Awka, the state capital, for a while but extended it to Nnewi on February 5, to further sell his candidature in that precinct when he was attacked.
A statement by the state’s Commissioner for Information Public Enlightenment, Don Adinobi, said “…A pavilion set up by someone who wants to contest the gubernatorial vote in the state, Ozigbo, was vandalised by thugs, with a stern warning to the politician not to ever visit Nnewi to campaign for public office.
“The pavilion was not set up for a political campaign or rally but for a walk to keep fit by his supporters in the industrial town of Nnewi.
“If a mere subtle campaign by Ozigbo to create awareness about himself and his interest to participate in the PDP primaries in June could attract so much hostility, we can imagine the extent some desperate politicians can go to silence their opponents when the campaign for primaries starts formally,” Adinuba said.
Other politicians in the state had also expressed fears over the political gangsterism rising ahead of the election, noting that such must be condemned and nipped in the bud.
On its part, the Anambra Civil Society Network (ASCONET), while reacting to the Soludo’s attack on Thursday asked that the state’s governor should declare a state of emergency on security in the state.
The chairman of ASCONET, Chris Azor, urged residents of the state to be extra vigilant.
“Citizens are hereby enjoined to be extra vigilant, assist the State Government and law enforcement agents, and eschew all forms of criminal activities,” he said.