Three policemen and a fish seller were killed on Thursday by a gang of robbers who stormed the First City Monument Bank on Admiralty Way in Lekki, Lagos State.
It was learnt that the robbers, numbering 13 arrived the bank wearing military uniform and shooting sporadically for about 30 minutes.
Eyewitnesses claimed that the robbers, who were armed with Ak-47 guns gained entrance into the bank after overpowering the security men.
One of the witnesses claimed that before entering the bank, the gunmen shot at a police van stationed close to the bank.
The policemen, according to him, engaged them in a crossfire and in the process three of them( policemen) died. A fish seller was said to have been killed by a stray bullet in the incident which happened around 5pm.
PUNCH Metro gathered that several other persons also sustained gunshot injuries.
But another witness claimed that the policemen were escorting an oil service company staff bus when they ran into the bandits.
He said, “The policemen were in a patrol van escorting a bus belonging to an oil company when the armed robbers sighted and shot them dead.”
One of the eyewitnesses, Kola Alade, who abandoned his car and fled the scene, said other policemen in the van fled.
He said, “They were shooting non-stop for about 30 minutes, I saw a policeman and two others persons on the floor with blood gushing out of them. Some policemen tried to engage them, but the robbers were very brutal. They eventually robbed the bank.”
Another eyewitness said he saw seven members of the gang wearing life jackets.
He said, “It was like we were in battlefield. I was shaking where I hid. They escaped in a speed boat .”
A worker of the bank, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to do so , described the attack as unfortunate.
He, however, said he could not ascertain whether the robbers were able to cart some money away .
He said, “I do not have the details of the incident now. I was not even around when it happened. It was very unfortunate. I do not know whether they stole money or not. The head of Corporate Affairs Department of the bank is not in the country now to comment on it.”
The FCMB spokesperson, Louis Ibe, could not be reached for comment.
But the Lagos State Police spokesperson, Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed that three policemen were shot dead while trying to contain the robbers.
He said, “Three policemen who stood gallantly defending the facility were killed in the process. Investigation has already commenced and we have launched a serious manhunt on the robbers. We will ensure that we trace their hideout and track them down.”
Some readers, who commented on Lindaikejiblog, narrated their experiences of the robbery.
One anonymous wrote, “Just passed through that way…Gosh…C dem washing blood off d road….pple in tears….May God accept their souls
Another reader wrote, “I was there and I saw the Nigerian police armed, but always siting like they are on holiday. Nigerian police please wake up and always be on the alert. Stop chasing okada riders and danfo drivers . Be alert, robbers are always around . Now, you all have left your loved ones because you didn’t act gallant. RIP.
On Nairaland.com, a member, Shamah wrote, “Exactly around 4.52pm today (Thursday), I heard gunshots along Admiralty Way, Lekki phase 1, Lagos, as suspected armed robbers attacked one of the banks along the street.
“Everyone around had to run for their lives as no one knows where the bullets will land. Even the Lekki-Ikoyi Toll gate was on a stop.
“Watching from my rooftop, I saw people coming out of their vehicles by the toll gate and running for their lives. The shooting lasted for more than 20mins. All I hear now is police sirens everywhere around.”
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