The Nigerian Army says it has captured the second-in-command to the neutralised Commander of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and the Eastern Security Network (ESN) in Aba State.
The Director, Army Public Relations, Brig-Gen. Mohammed Yerima in a Press release, said 48-year-old Awurum Eze, a native of Umoneke Nta in the Isiala-Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State, was arrested in a raid by troops of the Nigerian Army.
Recall that States in the South-East and South-South parts of Nigeria have recorded upsurge in crime by unidentified gunmen for the past three months.
He alleged that Eze had escaped from his village on May 4 when the operatives of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) stormed his village house in Isiala Mbano where he was hiding.
According to the Army, “The Second-in-Command to the neutralised IPOB/ESN terrorist leader Ikonso, Awurum Eze, has been arrested by security operatives in Aba, Abia State.
“The 48-year-old Awurum Eze, a native of Umoneke Nta, Isiala-Mbano LGA, Imo State, had on the 4th of May, 2021 escaped when operatives of Intelligence Response Team (IRT) stormed his village house in Isiala Mbano where he was hiding.
“Intensive manhunt was thereafter launched towards tracing and arresting him. He was eventually apprehended on Wednesday, May 12, 2021, in Aba after weeks of unrelenting follow-ups by operatives.
“Awurum Eze is one of the main sponsors of the numerous killings in Imo State and has been on the wanted list of security agents for more than three months.
“Many of the arrested IPOB /ESN terrorists had earlier mentioned him as their key sponsor, mastermind and Second-in-Command to the late Ikonso. According to them, amongst all their leaders in Imo State, only Ikonso and Awurum have direct communication link with Nnamdi Kanu. He can be seen in several photographs posing with the fugitive terrorist leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
“Investigation by the combined team of security operatives continues”, he said.
The development has send fears down the spines of villagers around the locality over the heightened security situation.