By Adeyinka Adedipe
Gunmen suspected to be armed on Wednesday attacked an Army patrol van in Edo State, killing a soldier and carting away sacks believed to have been loaded with cash.
Three soldiers were said to have been in the military vehicle that was heading towards Ikpoba Hill when the robbers struck at the traffic lights along Akpakpava Road by First Junction around 2.10 pm.
The suspects drove an unmarked Toyota Camry car against the traffic facing the military vehicle as two of the four occupants allegedly alighted and opened fire on the soldiers
The three soldiers were said to have abandoned their patrol vehicle and the sacks as they took to their heels.
Eyewitnesses said the armed men took the bags from the patrol van after the soldiers had fled.
A shop owner said, “One of the three soldiers fell while running away, he tried to get up, but he couldn’t, he was bleeding. Later, his two other colleagues came to meet him but they were helpless.”
Contacted, the Public Relations Officer, 4 Brigade Nigerian Army headquarters, Benin City, Captain Yusuf Sokoya, simply said, “I will find out if it is true. Don’t call again, I will call you.”
Sokoya was yet to revert as promised as of press time.
However, when contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, SP Chidi Nwabuzor, confirmed the incident.
He said, “The Edo State Police Command can confirm that a soldier was killed on Wednesday in Benin City.
“A good Nigerian reported the incident at the police station covering that neighbourhood. The hoodlums carted away bags believed to have been loaded with cash kept inside the Army van.”