A gang of suspected armed robbers have shot dead a senior lecturer at the University of Benin, Dr Godwin Omofonwa, in Ugbowo, in the Ovia North-East Local Government Area of Edo State.
It was gathered that the robbers had invaded the residence of the university don in Evbuomore quarters in the early hours of Wednesday.
They were said to have shot Omonfonwa and dispossessed him and others of their belongings.
However, one of the armed robbers was said to have been killed during a gun duel with policemen, while five others fled.
The Public Relations Officer of the university, Mr. Michael Osasuyi, said the deceased was the examination officer of the Faculty of Education.
He said, “It is a very big blow to the university; the vice-chancellor is saddened and commiserates with members of the family. We pray and hope that everybody puts hands together to support the government and the police.
“The police cannot perform magic; they work with information. Anybody who has useful information should give it to the law enforcement agencies so that they can comb the area and restore peace to the state.”
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo, told journalists at a press briefing in Benin that the command received a distress call around 1.14am on Wednesday, adding that some policemen were immediately deployed in the scene.
“In the ensuing gun battle, one of the marauders was shot dead, while others escaped. Sadly, Dr Godwin Omofonwa, a lecturer in the Department of Education, University of Benin, died from gunshot wounds he received from the robbers.
“This particular incident is an isolated case as crime has been on a downward trend since my assumption of office as the Commissioner of Police, Edo State. The police have been on the trail of this particular group of hoodlums, who have been troubling the vicinity, until one of them met his Waterloo,” he added.
Kokumo noted that three mobile phones belonging to the deceased lecturer and a Nokia phone stolen from one Precious, were recovered from the killed robber.
The police commissioner said other items recovered from the scene of the incident were a single-barrelled gun, an iron cutter, one live and 12 expended cartridges and a torch.
In a related development, Kokumo said one person had been arrested for the alleged murder of a priest in the Ovia North-East LGA of the state.
He noted that the suspect, one Johnson Igonoyoye, had confessed to the crime.
He added that two other persons were arrested for allegedly dispossessing a woman of her Lexus 330 Sports Utility Vehicle and jewellery.