The Nigerian Army has insisted that its men did not incite Tuesday’s crisis in Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers Sate.
The spokesman of 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu expressed displeasure at media reports, saying it was unfortunate that some media houses did not verify information before reporting the incident.
The Nigerian Army spokesperson was reacting to reports on the clash between suspected members of the Indigenous People of Biafra and Hausas in Oyigbo area of Rivers state.
Colonel Iliyasu said it was worrisome that some news media included in their reports that a mosque in the area was burnt during the incident, emphasizing that the mosque was intact.
He appealed to the media to double check their information before rushing to press, noting that misleading reports could further aggravate ugly situation like that of Tuesday.
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Community sources revealed that the mosque was allegedly ransacked by the rampaging IPOB members, while two police patrol vehicles were also allegedly burnt down during the crisis.
Meanwhile, Publicity secretary, Arewa consultative Forum, in the state, Alhaji Babaji Yahu Tanko , said three persons allegedly died in the sad incident, adding that several lock up shops belonging to Hausa traders were razed down.
Chairman of the local government area, Mr Sunday Chukwudi said peace had been restored to the area, noting that security agencies had moved in to safeguard lives and property.
At press time economic activities had resumed in the area with the market open for business. Some traders told the Vanguard under conditions of anonymity that some Hausa youths were whisked away in buses by the IPOB members that Tuesday.
“We have not heard anything about them. We don’t know if they were later released. But I saw when they bundled some of the wheel barrow boys into waiting vehicles”, a trader said. There was heavy presence of security men in the area. At some points pedestrians were seen raising their hands in surrendering positions as they walked passed the security men.