Two Policemen and four others were killed on Friday following a clash between men of the Nigerian Police Force and members of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, in Nnewi.
The four others who died in the clash are believed to be members of IPOB.
Reports by The Punch said the IPOB members marched round Nnewi and environs on Friday trying to sensitise people on the need for a referendum on the need for the Sovereign State of Biafra and the rejection of the 2019 general elections.
Numbering about 2000, the group was said to have stormed the Nnewi market, shouting “No referendum, no 2019 election,” waving the Biafran flag and asking people in the market not to participate in the 2019 general elections unless the Federal Government heeded their demand for the conduct of referendum to actualise Biafra Republic.
The report further said trouble started when security operatives arrived at the scene in three Toyota Hilux pick-up vans and attempted to stop the protesters.
Members of the group were said to have pounced on the policemen and destroyed their vans, leaving two people dead in the process and forcing traders in the Nkwo Nnewi market to close their shops and scamper for safety.
However, the Anambra State Police Command said only one policeman, an Inspector, died in the protest while a Divisional Police Officer in the area was hospitalised after sustaining injuries in the clash.
Confirming the incident to The Punch, the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of operations, Mike Okoli, said, “I will confirm to you that we lost a policeman, an inspector in the clash. The DPO who went with him to that operation is hospitalised. I can’t tell you of any other casualties; this is the much I know.
Meanwhile, the Media and Publicity Secretary IPOB, Emma Powerful, in a statement in Awka, said members of the group went on a peaceful demonstration to express their joy over the “second coming and appearance” of their leader, Nnamdi Kanu, in Israel.
The statement read, “Our leader’s reappearance in Israel after the Nigerian government and her security forces, including the Nigerian Army, Air force and Naval forces invaded his compound at Afaraukwu Ibeku in Umuahia, Abia State, last year September is clearly an indication to all and sundry that God Almighty is behind the struggle for Biafra liberation.
“Biafrans are equally today showcasing to the world that we are ready to boycott every Nigerian elections come 2019 especially the presidential election next year.
“Our march today on the roads and streets across Biafraland must send signals to politicians and saboteurs among us that Biafrans are determined to leave the prison called Nigeria where British government experimented to lead black Africans and other black nations across the globe but failed to live up to the expectations for over 100 years because of the Hausa-Fulani caliphate dominations.
READ ALSO: I regret ever joining APC – Atiku
“IPOB rally and march today (Friday) being November 23, 2018 is ongoing in all the states across Biafraland like Rivers, Enugu, Abia, Anambra, Delta, Imo, Ebonyi, Cross Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Bayelsa states and other Biafra clans and tribes fraudulently carved into Kogi, Benue and Edo States.”
He said the group would not rest until a date was given for Biafra referendum to hold so that its people would decide whether to stay in Nigeria or not.
He added, “IPOB is divinely ordained to retrieve Biafra sovereignty from this enclave called Nigeria. We are coming to show Nigerians and its handlers including their security apparatus what is called civil disobedience because IPOB is more of intellectuals.”