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The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, has asked Senate President Bukola Saraki, to appear at the office of Intelligence Response Team (IRT) office in Abuja, over the robbery incident that took place in Offa, Kwara state, in April this year.

In a letter dated July 23 and addressed to Saraki, the police IG asked the Senate President to be at IRT’s office at 8am on Tuesday “for further investigation”.

The police had said some of the robbery suspects confessed that they were Saraki’s thugs, an allegation he has since denied.

The lawmaker was asked to appear at force headquarters for questioning, but the police eventually said Saraki should not appear in person but respond to the allegations of the suspects in writing.

Details of the letter of invitation which was addressed to the Senate President read: “Letter of Invitation; Case of Offa robbery and gruesome murder of more than 31 persons and snatching of 21 AK47 Rifles on the 5th of April, 2018.

“I refer to this office letter CR:3000/IGP.SEC/ABJ/VOL./130/571 dated 4th June 2018 and your letter of response NASS/8th/S/SP/lGP/15/6/18 dated 7th June 2018 on the above subject matter (copies attached) and to further restate as follows.

“Recall that the Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) is investigating a case of Armed Robbery which occurred on the 5th of April, 2018 during which a gang of dare devil Armed Robbers, stormed Offa, Kwara State and attacked a Police Station, robbed six Banks namely First Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, ECO Bank, Zenith Bank, Union Bank and lbolo Micro Finance Bank, killed over thirty one (31) Persons including nine Police officers and pregnant women and snatched twenty (21) AK47 rifles.

“During the investigation’of the Armed Robbery by the Intelligence Response Team, a CCTV footage of the Armed Robbery in one of the banks, captured the image of two persons. The CCTV footage was circulated on the social media and this led to their identification as Kunle Ogunleye and Micheal Adikwu. The two persons were tracked and arrested by the Police and they made very useful statements and named the five gang leaders who organized the Armed Robbery.

“Some of the five gang leaders made confessional statements admitting their participation in this worst Armed Robbery in the history of Nigeria and that they are political thugs under the name, Youth Liberation Movement aka ‘Good boys’ allegedly sponsored by you and that you have given them firearms, money and vehicles. It was equally discovered that one of the vehicles, a Lexus Jeep, used by the gang leader (Ayoade Akinnibosun) has a sticker plate number “‘SARAKI’ Kwara State of Harmony.

“The Lexus Jeep was parked in the Government House after the arrest of Ayoade Akinnibosun and in order to conceal evidence, the Chief of Staff to the Executive Governor of Kwara State, arranged for the removal of the sticker plate number “SARAKI Kwara State of Harmony” from the Lexus jeep and quickly registered it in the name of the suspect, six days after the suspect has been arrested by the Police.

“Specifically Mr Ayoade Akinnibosun ‘m’ 27 Years in his Confessional Statement stated that “members of his group are Political Thugs working for Senator Bukola Saraki and Governor of Kwara State”. That he is the head of the Political Thugs named Youths Liberation Movement covering about seven (7) Local Governments Areas of Kwara South.

“That he gets vehicle and monetary gifts etc from Senator Bukola Saraki through the Chief of Staff to the Governor of Kwara State; that the last money he got directly from Senator Bukola Saraki was Five Hundred Thousand (N500,000) Naira.

“He made mention of some other thugs in Kwara Central with guns which Senator Bukola Saraki is sponsoring as Alhaji Alawo, Alhaji Dona, Alhaji Jawando among others, that Senator Bukola Saraki supplies the armsand vehicles to the thugs; that everyone in Kwara Central fear them because of their guns and ability to kill anybody without hesitation”.

“Furthermore the suspect Ayoade Akinm’bosun stated that the date you Senator Saraki visited Offa in sympathy with the victims to the Palace of the Oba, that he and two other gang members were with you in the convoy.

“In your response to the above allegations, you stated “ by virtue of my participation in politics, I have a large followership which makes it impossible for me to know all of them. I can say categorically that I am in no way associated with the vehicle mentioned in your letter nor have I given any arms to any thug or other persons in kwara State or anywhere else. For the records, your letter under reference did not include the full text of the statements made by the accused persons.

“After a careful perusal of your letter to the Police, it was discovered that the statement requires further clarification and coupled with the fact that you stated that the full text of the statements of the suspects were not shown to you, it is imperative you report to the Police to make further statements after giving you the full text of the statements of the suspects.

“It is in line with the above that you are requested to report to the head of the Investigation Team at the Intelligence Response Team at Guzape Junction, Asokoro Extension Abuja on 24th of July, 2018 at 8am for further investigation on the matter.”

BIG STORY

PHOTO: Tanko All Smiles After Senate Confirmation As CJN

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The Senate has confirmed Justice Muhammad Tanko as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.

He was confirmed at plenary on Wednesday.

The Senate had earlier gone into a closed-door session over his confirmation.

The upper legislative chamber went into the session after Abdullahi Abubakar, senate leader, moved a motion for the confirmation of Muhammad.

On Tuesday, Senate President Ahmad Lawan had asked that copies of Muhammad’s curriculum vitae (CVs) be shared among the senators.

Muhammad has been occupying the office of CJN in an acting capacity since January.

He took over the office after President Muhammadu Buhari suspended Walter Onnoghen for alleged misconduct.

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BIG STORY

Please Beg Rafiu Not To Leave Me, He Should Forgive Me — Woman Who Attacks Hubby With Broken Bottles Prays Court

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An Ibadan-based trader, Bushira Salawudeen, has prayed a Mapo Customary Court to plead with her husband, Rafiu, to forgive her and stop the divorce proceedings.

Salawudeen, in her short statement before Alhaji Suleiman Apanpa, the President of the court, admitted that she threatens to attacks her husband with broken bottles during arguments to silence him.

“I can’t tell you what usually comes over me. I just know that I do attack Rafiu with broken bottles.

“Please, help me beg him, I will not repeat it again,” she begged the court.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Rafiu had told the court to put an end to the 23-year-old union between him and his wife on grounds of threat to life, lack of love and nagging attitude.

“For over three years now, she has threatened my life. She breaks bottles and threatens to stab me with it.

“I can’t allow her into my house again,” he told the court.

Corroborating the plaintiff’s submission, Rafiu’s sister prayed the court to dissolve the union without any further waste of time.

“My lord, I have spoken to her to drop her arrogance and act of hooliganism, but her heart is made of stone.

Delivering his ruling, Justice Apanpa noted that the court does not tolerate any act that could bring about bloodshed.

Apanpa dissolved the marriage and awarded custody of two children to Rafi’u and the one to Salawudeen.

“Rafiu shall pay N5,000 as the child’s monthly feeding allowance in addition to being responsible for his education and welfare.

“Rafiul shall also pay N5,000 to Bushira to enable her to move her property,” the arbitrator ordered.

(NAN)

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BIG STORY

Hit-And-Run Driver Kills NAN Director Two Months After Predecessor’s Death

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A hit-and-run driver on Sunday killed Christian Okoro, the Head of Technical Services of the News Agency of Nigeria.

Okoro, 50, was killed around Sharp Corner area of Mararaba along the Keffi-Abuja Road while trying to cross the road to pick his car.

His death is coming barely two months after his predecessor, Mathias Ajudua, died on May 10.

An eyewitness account indicated that Okoro had gone to watch the Nigeria/Algeria AFCON semifinal encounter at a football viewing center and was on his way home after the match when the speeding vehicle knocked him down and zoomed off.

He was said to have earlier gone for his community meeting and was heading home when he decided to join some friends to watch the crucial match.

“The car was speeding, so when it hit Okoro, the impact was very heavy on him. He died instantly,” the witness told NAN.

Meanwhile, Okoro’s corpse has been deposited at the National Hospital, Abuja mortuary, while a condolence register has been opened at the NAN headquarters in Abuja.

A senior Police Officer, who confirmed the incident, described it as “saddening and unfortunate”.

“The matter has been reported to us and is being investigated,” the officer told NAN, craving anonymity.

Born on June 20, 1969 in Enugu-Ezike, Igbo Eze North Local Government in Enugu State, Okoro attended St. Theresa College, Nsukka, Enugu State before heading to the Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu, where he bagged a Bsc in Electrical/Electronics.

He was a member of the Nigeria Society of Engineers and the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria.

He joined the services of NAN on January 8, 2004, and steadily rose to become an Assistant Director, Technical Services.

He is survived by his widow, Cordelia, and four children.

The Acting Managing Director of NAN, Malam Ibrahim Mammaga, who led the management and staff of NAN to pay a condolence visit to his family, described Okoro’s death as “a huge loss” to the NAN family.

“The death of Okoro has robbed NAN of dedicated staff. Okoro was a huge asset to the agency. He has left a vacuum that will be difficult to fill,” Mammaga said.

He prayed God to grant the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.

Alhaji Abdulhadi Khaliel, Head, Administration and Human Resources Management, who also reacted to Okoro’s death, described it as “devastating and painful”.

“Okoro was a peace-loving officer, who was committed to duty and always ready to learn,” Khaliel said.

Julius Enehikhuere, a Deputy Editor-in-Chief, described Okoro as “a jolly good fellow and a committed staff who was always there for the editorial department”.

“We shall miss his team spirit and deep commitment to duty. His sudden exit is shocking to all of us. We pray God to comfort the family,” Enehikhuere said.

The agency’s Assistant Director A/HRM, Moses Uzoagba, also described Okoro’s death as “a personal loss to me”.

“Okoro, apart from being a colleague, was my personal friend. We have been together for years and I will greatly miss him,” Uzoagba said.

Another staff, Livinus Ugochukwu, said Okoro was a personal friend whose death had hit him like a thunderbolt.

“The news shocked me to my marrows; I am particularly sad because his children are still very young,” Ugochukwu said.

Kemi Olumorin, who worked with Okoro in the office, described him as “a transparent boss that was always ready to listen to his subordinates”.

“He was approachable; he had a listening ear and was a good boss. He was a very considerate leader and could feel your pains,” Olumorin said.

Okoro is the second Director of ICT to have died within the last two months.

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