Suspected members of the Movement for the Sovereign State of Biafra have thrown two policemen into River Niger and stabbed another officer to death.
A police officer, who pleaded anonymity, told the News Agency of Nigeria that the protesters attacked some officers at the bridge, overpowered two of them, before throwing them into the river.
“We have been able to retrieve one of them from the river. He was brought out in an unconscious mood and rushed to the hospital, however, the second victim is still missing,” he said.
Uche Okelue, a witness, said the fracas broke out after a police team threw teargas at the protesters who were demanding for the independence of Biafra, in an effort to disperse them.
“The police used teargas on the MASSOB people as they were protesting along Anwai Road this morning, so the people got angry and attacked the policemen with knives and broken bottles,” he said.
He added: “They caught one policeman, beat him up before stabbing him to death; it was a fierce confrontation as everyone ran in different directions.”
The protesters were said to have assembled along Mammy Market Junction on Nnebisi Road in Asaba, Anwai Road, still in Asaba, and around the River Niger bridge.
A witness said some persons, including policemen, who sustained injuries in the fracas, were taken to the Federal Medical Centre, Asaba, a claim that was corroborated by a nurse in the hospital.
Ben Onwordi, another witness, said many people sustained injuries in the clash at Nnebisi Road.
“As the group were protesting, the police patrol vehicle came behind them and tried to disperse them but the MASSOB people resisted and in the process they clashed and many people were injured,” Onwordi said.
He added: “The MASSOB people damaged the police patrol vehicle, vandalising the windscreen and doors before all of them fled into different directions.”
When contacted, Charles Mouka, the spokesman of the Police in Delta State, said he was still monitoring the situation.
“We are still waiting for information on the incident. As I speak to you now, we are in the field, so I cannot say anything for now,” Mouka said.