Some policemen in Imo took to their heels earlier in the week after irate youths chased them with masquerades.
A video of the incident sighted by The Herald showed dozens of youths pursuing a police Toyota Hilux vehicle across a dusty and unpaved road.
The incident occurred in Arondizuogu community, where residents celebrated the Ikeji cultural festival, in defiance of the subsisting stay-at-home order in the state.
Policemen from the Okigwe Division had stormed the community to break up the gathering but were chased away with masquerades.
Division Police Officer (DPO) for Okigwe, Chijioke Nwokoma, disclosed this in a news conference in the Imo State capital, Owerri on Thursday.
According to him, the elders of the community had kicked against holding the festival in compliance with the ban on social gathering as well as religious and cultural activities by the state government.
But the youths insisted on going ahead with it.
Nwokoma said that when the police got wind of a large gathering of people and masquerades in the community, policemen were dispatched to enforce the ban.
However, he said that the youths refused to heed warnings to break up the gathering, causing the policemen to retreat.
The DPO said it was in the process of retreating that the policemen were chased by the youths.
“No arrest was made, no life was lost, nobody was hurt. We didn’t want to be provoked to a level where there could be loss of lives. If you see the crowd you can imagine what could have happened if police did not retreat,” Nwokoma said.