Gunmen have killed a former policeman and two others at Ikot Udobong, Ikot Obioma and Edem Akai groups of villages in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.
It was learnt on Thursday that the three men were killed when two rival cult groups — the Iceland (the Red) and Debam (the White) engaged each other in a battle of supremacy in the last two days.
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Many other people were also said to have sustained different degrees of injuries during the gun battle.
Our correspondent gathered that some of those identified as dead include a retired policeman from Nkanang Compound in Ikot Udobong, Okon Nkanang, and Akpan Inyang, from Ntuk Compound in the neighbouring Ikot Obioma Village.
A source who refused to be named said Inyang was allegedly killed by the Iceland group, in place of his brother who was alleged to be a member of the Debam group.
Inyang’s brother was said to have escaped after sighting the gun-wielding Icelanders on motorbikes en-route their compound at Ikot Obioma.
Although the specific motive behind the killing of the retired policeman could not be ascertained as at press time, it was gathered that the deceased may have been a security informant or a relation to the wanted member of the Debam group.
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The Police Public Relations Officer, Odiko Ogbeche, said he has heard of the incident but has not confirmed officially.
“That information has not been given to me officially, but I’ve just heard of it.
“I’m yet to get an official report. By the time we get it, we will know whether he was a former police officer and from which area and all that,” he said.