Gunmen attack Labour Party meeting in Enugu, disrupt meetings

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Gunmen, on Sunday, attacked members of the Labour Party (LP) who were holding a meeting in Awgu Community, Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu State. The gunmen, numbering about four, were said to have stormed the venue of the meeting and shot sporadically causing the party members to flee.

The incident happened at about 5:30 p.m. The chairman of the party in the council area, Ikechukwu Igwebuike, told Easterner no life was lost in the attack, but that some members sustained injuries.

“They just stormed the venue on three motorcycles and started firing,” he said.

Mr Igwebuike said the gunmen shot in the air, and later hit some people with their rifles, apparently to disrupt the meeting.

“We believe strongly that this is the handiwork of the opposition party,” he said, without mentioning the party.

“The windshield of one of our members’ vehicle was shattered,” Mr Igwebuike added.

Earlier, on Wednesday, some LP members were also attacked by gunmen in Nenwe, a community in Aninri Local Government Area of the state.

The gunmen, numbering about four, stormed the venue on two motorcycles. It was not clear, for now, if they were the same gunmen that attacked party members in Awgu. The Chairperson of the LP in the council area, Benjamin Ajah, who confirmed the attack said the incident happened at about 2 p.m. He said the meeting was earlier billed to hold at the community secretariat, but was moved to a civic centre in the community after the administrator of the secretariat, Israel Anih, asked the party members to vacate the complex.

“Mr Anih said we should not hold the meeting at the secretariat,” the party chairperson said.

The administrator of the secretariat, Mr Anih, is a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.

“We just finished arranging the hall and just about saying our opening prayer for the meeting, then the armed men came and pursued us,” Mr Ajah told Easterner.

“They started shooting and we ran.”

Mr Ajah said no life was lost and that the attack has been reported to the police.

The police spokesperson in the state, Daniel Ndukwe, did not respond to calls and text message seeking comments from him on the incident. There are suspicions among LP members, that the attacks might have been sponsored by some PDP members in the state said to be “disturbed” by the growing popularity of the LP in the state. The PDP is the ruling party in Enugu and has been winning all the elections in the state for several years now.

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