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Factual Reportage

A traditional ruler who was among those declared wanted in connection to the killing of 17 military personnel at Okuama community in Delta state has reportedly surrendered himself to the police .

The monarch reported himself at Delta State Police Headquarters in Asaba at 9:20pm on Thursday.
The Commissioner of Police, Delta State Command, Mr. Olufemi Abaniwonda, confirmed the latest development in a telephone interview with our correspondent last night.
Abaniwonda said: “Yes, I can confirm to you that the traditional ruler is with us. He surrendered himself to us at police headquarters in Asaba this (Thursday) night. We are going to hand him over to the military, which declared him wanted.”

The monarch, HRM Clement Ikolo, Urukpe 1, who had reportedly ascended the throne in controversial circumstances on November 16, 2023, was number seven in the list released by DHQ yesterday morning.
Okuama community, the scene of the bloodbath which claimed the lives of the 17 soldiers, including the Commanding Officer of 181 Batallion of the Nigerian Army, Bomadi, Headquarters of Bomadi LGA of Delta state, Lt. Col. A. H. Ali, Major S.D. Shafa, Major D.E. Obi and Captain U. Zakari, is among 17 communities in Ewu Kingdom under the traditional authority of the wanted monarch.

The director, Defence Media Operations, Major General Edward Buba disclosed this during the biweekly update on military operations across the country yesterday, in Abuja.
He said Nigeria as nation must never allow the incident that occurred in Delta State – which led to the killing of 17 soldiers that were buried on March 27, 2024 – to ever happen again, adding that the armed forces are forces for stability that employ both kinetic and non-kinetic measures to achieve the desired end s

General Buba said before the ugly incident, the military had, as part of efforts to gain goodwill, constructed several civic projects in Delta State.
He, therefore, called on elders and community leaders to expose the wanted persons and ensure their arrest.
He said, “The banner of eight wanted persons involved with the killing including a woman is hereby released. Accordingly, it is necessary to state that citizens are our first line of intelligence and must rise to the occasion in honour of their nation.”
The wanted persons are Prof. Ekpekpo Arthur (monarch), Andaowei Dennis Bakriri, Akevwru Daniel Omotegbo (a.k.a. Amagbein), Akata Malawa David, Sinclear Oliki, Clement Ikolo Oghenerukeywe, Reuben Baru and Igoli Ebi.

He said the elders and community leaders have an obligation to expose these wanted persons.
The director said troops would continue with their efforts until the culprits are found, arrested, tried, and brought to justice by Nigerian law.
However, the monarch, in an earlier telephone interview with LEADERSHIP Friday from his hideout, yesterday, expressed his innocence.
He advised the authorities at DHQ to embark on thorough and painstaking investigation that would uncover the identities of the real culprits of the dastardly act.

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