Nine persons are feared dead after gunmen reportedly attacked Taaba and Okwale communities in Khana Local Government Area of Rivers State on Tuesday night.
Several houses, including the palace of the Paramount Ruler of Taaba-Ogoni, King Nule Junior, were razed.
The house of the President of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), Chief Legborsi Pyagbara, at Nyokuru-Ogoni was also burnt in the invasion.
An eyewitness said the gunmen invaded Okwale about 8pm, killed five persons, while another set of assailants attacked Taaba and killed four on Wednesday morning.
He said: “The attackers raided Okwale on Tuesday evening about 8pm, shooting sporadically and at their targets. They killed about five people. They also burnt many houses.
“This morning (Wednesday), they also attacked neighbouring Taaba and killed about four persons.”
Police spokesman Nnamdi Omoni assured the people that security has been tightened to restore normalcy.
He could however not confirm the number of casualties.
Omoni said: “I can confirm the attacks; the police have swiftly deployed its men in the area to restore peace and order while investigations into the incident begin.”
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), through its Publicity Secretary, Sunny Zorvah, condemned the violence.
Zorvah said, “MOSOP received with sadness reports from some Ogoni communities of the violence and killings carried out by cult groups. The renewed violence, which happened in Okwale, spilled over to Taabaa and Nyokuru, all in Nyokhana district in Khana council.
“MOSOP is pained over these unjustified attacks, which led to the burning of the house of MOSOP President in Nyokuru. We are also saddened by Tuesday’s killing of many persons and attack on the residence of Chief Monday Abueh and other persons in Okwale.
“This ugly situation demands urgent and thorough actions by security agencies and every necessary step required of the government. We call on the police and the special military joint task force to ensure the return of peace to the troubled communities, arrest the perpetrators without hurt on innocent persons, and ensure justice is served.”