AN attempt by about 50 armed youth to forcefully take over the Government House, Enugu in the early hours of Saturday, was repelled by security operatives attached to the Enugu State seat of power.
Vanguard gathered there was heavy shooting by security operatives, comprising policemen, men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC and soldiers who prevented the invaders from gaining entry into the Government House.
However, one of the attackers was shot dead while three others were arrested. The others, Vanguard learnt made good their escape,some with bullet wounds.
Several machetes were also recovered from the gang.
Although the mission of the youth, who were armed with machetes carrying flags with different inscriptions and insignia is yet to be ascertained, an eyewitness said they arrived the Government House at about 4.30 am in buses. They reportedly parked their vehicles along Nza Street and marched to the Government House gate where they met the security operatives.
They were said to have told the security men to open the gate claiming that they were at the Government House on protest but when one the NSCDC officials opened the gate to ask why they decided to come in the night, one of the invaders macheted him and made attempts to force the gate open for his members.
But sensing danger, other security operatives rushed out only to see many of them clubbing machetes and were giving orders to their members to move into the Government House.
The Chief Security Officer to Governor Sullivan Chime, Mr. Fidelis Ogarabe, DSP, who rushed to the scene after he was alerted by his men, immediately took control of the situation as the security operatives succeeded in repelling them after hours of shooting.
The security operatives pursued them from the Government House premises into the Independence Layout but only succeeded in arresting three of the gang, some of who tied red bands on their arms similar to those of the Bakassi Boys operating in some states in the South East.
Reacting to the development, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Sullivan Chime, Mr. Chukwudi Achife said â€œvigilant security personnel attached to the Government House Enugu early this morning foiled an armed attack on the Government House.â€
Achife said â€œthe attack occurred when at about 4.30am when young men numbering about 50 and carrying machetes and cutlasses invaded the Government House and tried to force their way in.
â€œThe attackers were immediately engaged by the security personnel who shot dead one person and arrested three. One security personnel was injured in the attack.â€
Achife added that the arrested persons along with some of the weapons recovered(matchetes) have since been handed over to the Enugu State Police Command for further investigations.