Mbaitoli in Imo State and its environs on Friday afternoon came under heavy attack by gunmen enforcing the five-day sit-at-home order.
The gunmen, who struck at different locations, killed a policeman and Prince Iheme, an elder brother to movie superstar, Osita Iheme aka Pawpaw.
The gunmen also macheted Commissioner for Solid Minerals, Martin Eke.
It was learnt the gunmen who rode in Trundra operational vehicles shot sporadically forcing people to scamper for safety.
While businesses abruptly wound up, the roads were deserted as motorists abandoned their vehicles and ran helter skelter.
At Orji, near Owerri, the state capital, the gunmen wearing black clothes in three vehicles attacked residents and passersby, including policemen.
Eyewitnesses told our correspondent that the gunmen met policemen at 7up junction at Orji and shot one cop dead.
He said, “They just killed a policemen now. They opened fire on them and were shouting there is sit at home. We have asked you to go home. Stay in doors.”
Another eyewitness said, “I just escaped death by a whiskers now. They stopped before us and shot in the eye and asked us to go home. They didn’t shot at us maybe because I was in the midst of some elderly women.”
It was also gathered that the fleeing gunmen also shot repeatedly at Nkwo-Orji market before taking off towards the Okigwe Road.
At Ubomri in the Mbaitoli Local Government Area, the gunmen attacked the convey of the All Progressives Congress candidate for Mbaitoli/ Ikeduru Federal Constituency, Akarachi Amadi.
While Prince Iheme was killed on the spot, Eke was matcheted.
The source stressed: “Prince Iheme was riding in the same vehicle with the commissioner for solid minerals, Martin Eke. Prince Iheme who is Pawpaw’s elder brother was killed on the spot. The commissioner who was sworn in two weeks ago was cut badly. He has just been rushed to a hospital. They were driving in a Ford vehicle. I pray he makes it.
Reacting, IPOB spokesman, Emma Powerful, called on the people to lynch anybody enforcing sit- at-home in the Southeast.
He said, “We told them to lynch anybody who is trying to enforce sit-at-home or they call the number given to them to call so ESN operatives can appear to that place.”
Imo Police spokesman Michael Abattam, was yet to respond to an inquiry on the incidents.