Soldiers from 3rd Battalion, Effurun, have apprehended suspects believed to be associates of ex-militant leader, Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias “Tompolo”, in Warri, Delta State.
Security sources told THISDAY on Wednesday that the suspects were arrested at about 11.a.m on Monday in an operation that was executed without firing a shot.
It was gathered that the soldiers stormed the hideout of the suspects identified as Simon Bebenimibo and Bomboy Oluwa in three trucks.
“We stormed the hideout after intelligence revealed their abode. We have been on their trail for a while now but executed their arrests on Monday“, the security source disclosed.
Although he did not reveal the reason for their arrest, the two suspects were known associates of Chief Ekpemupolo believed in security circles to be behind the spate of bombings of oil facilities in the renewed agitations in the region.
Ekpemupolo had however denied several times that he had links with the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), the group claiming responsibility for the attacks on oil facilities.
Since the arrest, THISDAY gathered, many of the aides of the ex-militant leader had gone underground for fear of being apprehended by security agents.
The Commanding Officer of 3rd Battalion, Major Monday Anzaku, did not answer calls from ThisDay nor respond to a text message for confirmation of the arrest.
However, the spokesperson of the Ijaw Peoples Development Initiative (IPDI), Mr Daniel Ezekiel, confirmed the arrest and castigated the military for allegedly breaking into the residence of the DWLSC member through the roof and arresting him without a court warrant.