Unknown Gunmen have on invaded Peremabiri community in the Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, setting over 20 houses ablaze.

SaharaReporters learnt the bandits invaded the community in about 50 speedboats with the aim of taking control of the community from an ex-militant leader, Paul Eris, also known as Ogunbos, whose house was attacked and burnt on Christmas Day. 

File photo used to illustrate story.

According to sources, the gunmen have chased out community members suspected to be loyal to Paul Eris and taken control of the town.

A community source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, "As I speak with you, many people are still hiding in the bush and many houses have been burnt down.

"The gunmen came in over 50 speedboats, shooting sporadically. When they gained entrance into the community, people had no other option but to run into the bush for safety.

"Our intelligence report says that the gunmen have vowed to remain in the community and ensure that Ogunbos and his followers never return to the community.

"I was told that the Christmas Day attack on Ogunbos' house was planned to drive him out of the town, and that today's attack was aimed at taking total control of the community."

The state police command has yet to confirm the attack or any loss of life. 

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