10 April 2013, Yenagoa – Emotions yesterday ran high at the Federal Medical Centre Yenagoa as the remains of eleven out the twelve policemen killed last Friday were deposited the morgue of the hospital.
The combined team of the soldiers drawn from the Joint Task Force and operatives of the Nigerian Police yesterday recovered the burnt and decomposed bodies of the slain policemen along the creeks of Southern Ijaw Local Government areas of Bayelsa State.
Some of the recovered bodies were reportedly burnt and mutilated by their killers who also stripped them of their uniforms and rifles stolen during vicious the attack.
Security sources identified some of the victims as Senior Inspector Joseph Ofujuni, Constable Ebebi Lucky aged 31 and indigene of Isama in Delta State, one Sgt Jack from Rivers State while the identities of others could not be obtained. One of the survivors was identified as Sgt Clinton Ambayi.
The senior inspector it was learnt was due for retirement before the end of the year.
The news of the recovery of the decomposed bodies of the policemen attracted crowd of family members and sympathizers to the FMC waterside.
Armed security operatives deployed to the area to provide security for the pathologists and ambulance services buses stationed at the waterside to convey the recovered corpses to the morgue had problem controlling surging crowd that besieged the area.
Scores of youths, women and relations of the slain policemen were seen waiting at the FMC waterside.
The corpses which were ferried to Yenagoa in a boat arrived the Ministry of Transport jetty at about 6.45pm and bagged before conveying them in two Bayelsa State Ambulance Services’ buses to the FMC morgue.
Journalists were barred from going close to the ambulances and some had shouting match with the policemen who insisted that they working on instruction from above.
The state police public relations officer, Mr. Alex Akhigbe, confirmed that the bodies of the slain policemen have been recovered and moved to the mortuary of the Federal Medical Centre.
He said, “yes, the corpses of the slain policemen have been recovered and brought to Yenagoa.”
Speaking on the development, the Media Coordinator of the Joint Task Force, Lt. Col. Onyema Nwachukwu said the JTF, in a collaborative effort with the police, assisted in the search and rescue operation for the bodies of the killed slain operatives, “we made success in recovering their bodies.”
Meanwhile, the identity of the leader of the team of aggrieved ex-militant youths accused of the launching the violent on the policemen in which twelve of them were killed have been identified as Virus.
According to sources, he was the Commanding Officer of the dismantled camp of the ex-militant leader, Kile Selky Torughedi aka Young Shall Grow.
Meanwhile the ex-militant leaders in the state under the aegis of the Leadership and Cultural Development Initiative (LPCDI) is willing to join the Nigerian Police in the manhunt for the killers of the policemen.
The President of the group, Comrade Pastor Reuben Wilson known as Commander Reuben, said though the ex-militant leaders have offered to assist the police, their action is to redeem the image of the amnesty programme in the state.
Meanwhile, the Bayelsa State Government has reassured families of the 12 policemen killed in the attack that their deaths will not go in vain as government is determined more than ever before to bring the perpetrators to book.
The government in a statement warned that, the recently appointed State Special Prosecutor and the Special Team is purely geared towards fast tracking the manner and way criminal cases are investigated and prosecuted as well as ensure that culprits receive the right sentences and serve the punishments.
It emphasized that it was unacceptable for persons, who have committed very grievous crimes to only work the streets as free men, because of lack of adequate investigation and prosecution of such criminals, who after a while return to their bad ways and threaten the peace and well being of law abiding citizens of the State.
The statement noted that, henceforth anybody arrested of any offence, especially those that are criminally related are not only going to be thoroughly investigated and prosecuted, but those that are found guilty made to face the full penalties of the law.
*Samuel Onyadonga, Vanguard