About nine female students of Nnamdi Azikiwe University (UNIZIK), Awka, Anambra State, were reportedly raped when heavily armed gunmen invaded their hostel in the early hours of Friday.
Sources confirmed that the gunmen, estimated to be about 20, had stormed Ifite road, Awka, where the hostels were located, shooting indiscriminately and robbing from room to room.
A student of the university, who would not want her name mentioned, told reporters that the gunmen were also armed axes and matchets.
“We were at the hostel when we had gunshots that lasted for about ten minutes and we ran for our lives because they had not gotten to our own hostel; we hid at the back of some shops in the area.
“Then we heard loud noise of female students shouting for help but nobody could summon the courage to stop them because they are well armed. Those that attempted to resist were beaten blue black and many people got injured but I cannot say the number of people affected.
“One of the female students that was raped is a virgin and they raped her twice and we are holding her because she wants to commit suicide.”
However, it was gathered that a call was placed to Governor Charles Soludo who ordered security operatives to battle the gunmen but before they could arrive, the operation was almost over.
Four days before the incident, students were attacked at bars and restaurants in the area.
Anambra State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, who confirmed the incident, said: “Our men on getting wind of the information got to Ifite Awka and was able to battle the criminals.”
He refuse to disclose further details of the Police operation including the number of arrests made as he claimed that making it public would interrupt investigations into the incident.