Three policemen suspected to have been contacted to escort a barge conveying petroleum products from Delta to Bayelsa state have been reportedly killed allegedly by sea pirates at Dodo River, Bayelsa state.
BIGPEN Online understands the incident happened on Saturday at Dodo river, a boundary town between Delta and Bayelsa state.
One of the police officer is said to be from Ekpan Police Division in Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta while the other two were reportedly drafted from Abuja.
Their identity could be immediately established as of press time on Sunday night.
Efforts to reach the Divisional Police Officer incharge of Ekpan Police Station, Mr. Asanaenyi Ibok on Sunday to know if he authorized the movement of one of his officer reportedly cut down by suspected sea pirates were not fruitful as of press time.
However, multiple police sources from the station confirmed the identity of the officer and said he is one of them.
Local sources claimed that the officers were on alleged illegal duty on a barge which conveyed petroleum products suspected to have been stolen.
Police sources who confirmed the incident said that the police attackers after killing their victims went away with their service rifles.
When contacted on phone by one of our correspondents, the Delta Police Commissioner, Mr Adeyinka Adeleke, confirmed the incident but said it took place in Bayelsa and not his jurisdiction as being speculated.
Adeleke who said he was on vacation, in the telephone conversation also confirmed that one of his men from Ekpan Police Division was among the policemen that were attacked.
He however said that he was not sure yet if the policemen were killed in the attack.
The Delta police boss asked our correspondent to contact his counterpart in Bayelsa for details of the incident.
“That incident happened in Bayelsa water (river) but it’s true somebody (policeman) from Ekpan Division was there.
“I am not sure if any of them was killed but it happened in Bayelsa. I cannot give account of what happened in Bayelsa command.”, he retorted.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, Onome Onowakpoyeya, though confirmed the attack on the policemen but could not say if they were killed or not.
She said that she was not aware if the attacked policemen were escorting product of illegally refined petroleum product during the incident.
“I have not actually gotten the full report because the incident didn’t happen here (in Delta). It happened in Bayelsa River”, she added
The Bayelsa State Police Command says they were also yet to get details of the alleged attack.
The Command Public Relations Officer, Mr. Asinim Butswat, in a telephone conversation told one of our correspondents that his attention was drawn to the incident but the command had not been able to authenticate it.
Butswat said, “Somebody sent me that information yesterday (Saturday) and I called our contacts here but certainly they are not from us.
“I am not in the picture completely because when I contacted our DPOs that happened to be along that axis they said nothing like that. They couldn’t confirm anything for me.
“May be because they are not from here nobody really knows what happened. And because they are not from this (Bayelsa) command, it is really difficult for us to authenticate the information”, he added.