Tension mounts as soldiers lay siege in Aba, market shutdown


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Aba, Abia state, is experiencing escalating tensions as military forces have established a strong presence in response to the fatal attack on five soldiers at the Obikabia junction checkpoint in Ogbor Hill.

The assailants, believed to be enforcing the Indigenous People of Biafra’s (IPOB) sit-at-home order, not only killed the soldiers but also set two patrol vans and the checkpoint ablaze.

The aftermath of the attack has seen an increase in military activity, with two helicopters continuously patrolling the Ogbor Hill area and its surroundings. This has caused panic among the residents, who now flee at the sight of the numerous high-speed military patrol teams.

In a show of force, soldiers have descended on Cemetery, Ngwa road, Nsulu markets, and other commercial areas, ordering traders to vacate the premises. The situation has also affected education in the city, with many schools remaining closed as parents have chosen to keep their children at home. Some schools that did open were forced to close before midday.

Despite the tense atmosphere, the Aba main motor park remained bustling with activity. It was also observed that soldiers had vacated the military checkpoints at Asa road and Emelogu junction in Ogbor Hill.

Fear of retaliation from the military has led residents of Umuola, Ukaegbu, Ehere, New Umuahia, Ururuka roads in Ogbor Hill, and Obohia and Ohanku in Ndiegoro area, along with those in nearby areas, to stay indoors.

The military has also set up barricades on the Aba – Umuahia section of the Enugu – Port Harcourt expressway, causing passengers to disembark at Arungwa, Umuekea, Isiala Ngwa, and Ntigha junctions and walk a kilometer with their hands raised. To circumvent this, some motorists have resorted to using local routes to avoid the numerous military checkpoints on the expressway.

Attempts to get a comment from the Army Public Relations Officer of the 14 Brigade, Ohafia, Lt. Innocent Omale, were unsuccessful as he did not respond to messages sent to his mobile number.


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