The scourge of cultism ravaging Rivers State reared its head again when supsected cultists engaged the military on Sunday and at the end five suspected cultists laid dead.
The shootout, which took place at Obelle community in Emohua Local Government Area of the state, was said to have claimed the lives of five cultists believed to be members of the Icelander cult.
Also, five people that were reportedly kidnapped by the same cultists on Friday around Elele Town in Ikwerre Local Government Area were said to have regained their freedom.
The Army, following the recurrent killings and other cult-related activities that were threatening the peace in the state, was said to have trailed the hoodlums to their new camp in Obelle.
It was gathered the soldiers chased the cultists, who engaged them in a gun battle, into the Obelle-Elele forest, where the five suspected cultists were gunned down.
In the process, five out of six hostages escaped from their captors.
According to one of the victims, Felix Uche, who escaped revealed that they were released following the incursion of the military into the camp of the suspected cult gang.
“They tied our hands, our mouth and our legs; they also used candle stick light to burn our flesh. We were there without food and water.
“They forced us to call our relatives so that they will bring ransom for our release, but when they heard serious gunshots from the soldiers around the forest where we were held hostage, they decided to free us and then ran for their lives”, he said.
When contacted, the Assistant Director Army Public Relations, 2 Brigade, Port Harcourt, Captain Eli Lazarus, confirmed that five cultists were killed and two criminal camps destroyed.