One person has been killed in a gun duel between operatives of the Nigerian Army and suspected members of the IPOB Eastern Security Network in Imo State.
The incident is said to have occurred at the Orlu Local Government Area of the state.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Orlando Ikeokwu, confirmed the exchange of gunfire to Channels Television. He however could not confirm the number of casualties, noting that he was yet to get full details of the incident.
Eyewitnesses reported that there is pandemonium and panic as sporadic shootings could be heard all around the area. This, witnesses claim may have led to the death of one or more persons, setting several shops and houses ablaze.
Many residents had to scamper for safety, even as schools and markets had to be shut for fear that individuals might be hit by stray bullets.
According to sources, the incident was occasioned by the alleged killing of a military officer and police personnel, by suspected members of the IPOB Eastern Security Network a few days ago.
All efforts to get through to the Army Commander 34 artillery brigade Imo State and the Army Public relations officer in Imo state proved abortive.
Meanwhile, Governor Hope Uzodimma has imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew (6pm to 6am ) on eight local government areas in the state following the eruption of crisis and killings in the area.
The affected local governments are Orlu, Oru East, Orsu Ideato North, Ideato south, Nkwerre, Njaba, Isu, and Nwangele.