17 Policemen, Others Killed As Armed Robbers Raid Ofa, Kwara

A gang of dare devil armed robbers   on Thursday raided some commercial banks in Offa,  Kwara State, killing about 17 persons including policemen on duty and  residents as well as  carting away an  undisclosed amount of   cash in the process.

The heavily armed hoodlums first attacked the Owode Police Station in the town where they killed the policemen who were on duty and some complainants  before embarking on their mission to raid the banks.

Sources said some customers who were transacting businesses in the banks were also killed in the incident which was said to have lasted one hour.

The robbers, according to eye witnesses, entered the town about  4:45 pm and operated till about 5:40 pm unchallenged after blocking the Ilorin and Osogbo entrances  into the town.

They were said to have  later made their escape through Igosun, a nearby community.

Among those said to have been killed by the armed robbers were a police officer  who was expected to retire in a few months and a pregnant police woman.

The bandits, numbering about 15, according to eye witness account,  came in different vehicles  and stationed themselves at strategic locations within  the town while the operation lasted.

They were  also said to have snatched some motorcycles to aid their escape.

The injured were conveyed to the General Hospital, Offa, for treatment while the corpses of the deceased have been evacuated.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state,  Ajayi Okasanmi, confirmed the  incident, saying victims included  policemen and other persons.

He said details of the incident  would be made public on completion of  investigation.

Offa  in the past  had witnessed  serial attacks on banks leading to the closure of some  branches in the highly commercial community which houses the Federal Polytechnic, Offa.