By NewsCritic Reporters
The assistant superintendent of Police, ASP, Henry Ifeanyi, who reportedly went out of control and allegedly fired gunshots repeatedly to cause pandemonium at the Central Police Station, CPS, area Aba was only enforcing shutdown of shops directives that is being violated by traders operating near the Police main entrance, it was learnt.
A report went viral weekend on how the said Police officer’s action that fateful day caused tension and apprehension around the CPS Aba, forcing traders to scamper for safety before he was allegedly disarmed by Mobile Police operatives.
However, Newscritic online can authoritatively report that ASP Henry Ifeanyi, was actually on duty that particular day to keep security around the CPS gate with other Police officers who were equally stationed to be on duty outside the station.
Since the outbreak of the unidentified gunmen palaver in the South East, the CPS Aba likewise other Police formations enhanced its security operations within and outside the stations, as 24 hours security surveillance systems were instituted within and around the vicinity of the facilities.
At the CPS Aba, the Area Command and DPO issued directives that all shops and drinking spots must shutdown before 6pm to enable the Police monitor movements around the area.
Sources told this newspaper that on that particular day, the street and shops within the CPS area were busy as at 8pm with activities capable of compromising the security of the area.
It was further gathered from eye witness account that the ASP Henry Ifeanyi, at this point and after repeated demands for the shops and drinking bars to closed down as it was already late, tried to get the traders to shutdown but met some resistance.
Investigations revealed that directly at the front of the CPS maingate is a beer parlour offering drinks to some men on mufti, who refused to obey the shutdown instructions and when the security officer on duty tried to enforce it there was commotion.
In the ensuing confusion, and unknown to him that the men drinking with civilians at the beer parlour were mobile Policem officers who failed to identify themselves, surprisingly they quickly moved to demobilized the ASP and prevented him from further enforcement of the shutdown order.
This reporter was told that the Police officer thinking that a mob action was imminent released a warning shot, before everything was brought under control. Police sources said he never expended more than a bullet as against the reports that he was shooting indiscriminately at people.
Also, there were no serious injuries sustained in the process except for some traders whose showcase were upturned in that fracas and their items scattered on the floor, especially for roast plantain and chicken sellers.
According to the eye witness account, the Police officer involved in the said shooting incident has been discharging his functions well and professionally until the latest incident with Mobile Policemen.
It was further gathered that the Area Command is handling the matter, while the commissioner of Police, CP, Janeth Egbede is said to be monitoring the investigation closely and want the report.
At the time of this report the ASP is said to be in custody, while investigations is continuing. The report of the officer being high on drugs has been found to be incorrect as he was only doing his work, and trying to enforce directives to protect the Police facilities, said the source. One concerned resident who spoke to NewsCritic online stressed that the way beer parlours are situated right at the gate of the CPS is not good as it gives the Police formation a bad image.