Residents of Otukpo in Benue State, North Central Nigeria were gripped with fear when dare-devil armed robbers on Friday stormed three banks in the area and made away with millions of naira.
DopeReporters gathered that the robbers drove into the town around 3:15 pm in Hilux vehicles and used dynamite to force the doors open.
It’s the sad tale of the Bank robbery that happened Friday at Otukpo Area in Benue state. Zenith, UBA, First Bank, Stanbic Bank were all robbed simultaneously in broad daylight.
Several people including Nigeria Police Officers were shot dead during the robbery.
The hooded criminals drove into Otukpo town in Toyota Hilux vehicles and cars from the Otukpa axis of the Otukpo-Enugu highway
An eyewitness who simply identified himself as Sunny, who operates a Point On Sales business close to one of the banks, said that the robbers first attacked the police station before going to the banks.
“It was sporadic gunshots that alerted people and passers to the arrival of the robbers.
“Everyone scampered for safety. What they did was first attack the police station, which is near the three banks.
“The banks affected include United Bank for Africa, UBA, Zenith Bank, and First Bank Plc.
The robbers operated for more than an hour without resistance from security operatives, and they killed people”
An eyewitness who did not want his name in print said the criminals killed customers who were in the banking halls and passers-by.
Residents said as the robbers rained bullets from all directions which hit passers-by and bank customers, the police took cover for the over two hours that the operation lasted.
Sources said the Otukpo Divisional Police Officer (DPO) was hit by bullets and taken to an undisclosed hospital.
An eyewitness said the robbers were throwing naira notes as they left in two Hilux vehicles and one car.
A source said when the robbers were done, they headed out of the town through the Otukpo-Aliade highway.
Otukpo is the political seat of Benue South Senatorial district. The Senatorial district comprises nine local government areas inhabited largely by the Idoma and Igede tribes.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer for Benue State Police Command, SP Catherine Anene, who confirmed the robbery incident said she was yet to get further details.
The well-executed robbery incident occurred as the state government hosted a security meeting in Makurdi, the state capital.
Viral videos showed lifeless bodies drenched in blood in banking halls and in the streets of Otukpo.
The four roads that crisscross Otukpo has police and military checkpoints. Residents wondered how these criminals operated for two hours without any form of resistance from the military and the police.