Gunmen on Tuesday invaded a Corpers’ Lodge situated along Udo Ekong Ekwere Street, Off Information Drive, Uyo Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State and raped the female occupants.
It was learnt that the gunmen invaded the area on tricycles around 1 am that night and carted away valuables including laptops, cell phones and money.
It was said that during the attack, the victims did not get any help despite their cries.
One of the corps members, Emeka Emmanuel, who narrated their ordeal, said, “They arrived on a tricycle, popularly called Keke and immediately started operation. They beamed high-intensity torchlight everywhere and pounced on every door with heavy iron and threatened to shoot us if we failed to cooperate.”
A female corps member, who preferred to remain unnamed said her phones, laptop and money were taken away from her by force after the hoodlums entered her room through the back door.
She said: “You know at that period of the night, most of us females, we used to sleep naked and the suddenness of the attack caught us unprepared. They beamed the torch through the window and threatened to shoot if the door is not quickly opened.
“I have never heard of this anywhere in Nigeria, even in the North, where insecurity is at the highest peak, that corpers could be deliberately targeted, raped, and robbed by criminals at gunpoint.
“Is it because we are not from Akwa Ibom State that no one could hear our shouts and come to save us?”
Also speaking, Mr Nsikak Ibanga, a night guard at the State Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists which is located opposite the corpers’ lodge said,
“I raised alarm by hitting the supporting pillars holding the reconstructed NUJ auditorium. The sound reverberated across the whole area but no response”.
Another neighbour, Bassey Offiong, stated, “when I heard the attack and the outcry of the corpers, I quickly reached out to the Police at Ikot Akpanabia Command, which is very close here, but they arrived a little late after the criminals had finished and left with their tricycle”.
Youth Leader of the area, Godwin Okpo, blamed the incessant criminals’ activities around communities on the collapse of internal security organized by the local residents.
Okpo blamed the inability of the youths to respond to the alarm on the noise of generators running in homes.
“I used to go round from house to house to collect monetary contributions for the night vigilante group to secure the area at night, but suddenly they started accusing me of embezzling their money, so there was nothing I could do again.
“When I heard the incident late in the night around 1 am this morning, I moved to the place but since I was alone, there was nothing I could do,” he stated.
When the Police Public Relations Officer, SP Odiko Macdon, was contacted, he said he was yet to be fully briefed on the incident, saying he would investigate and revert.
“I don’t have any information about the incident but I will find out and get across to you,” he said.