Connect with us

A policeman and about 11 others were shot dead while several others sustained gunshot injuries yesterday when armed robbers invaded Igarra town, the headquarters of Akoko-Edo Local Government Area of Edo State.

The robbers unleashed terror in the town as they attempted to rob two commercial banks – Unity Bank and Keystone Bank.

The evening attack sent hordes of residents scampering for safety. Also killed were two detained suspects at the Divisional Police Station, who were arrested yesterday morning for minor offences.

One of the dead detained suspects was said to have been arrested by the police for incomplete vehicle particulars. At press time, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Chidi Nwabuzor, said information about the attack was still sketchy, but promised to release more details later.

It was learnt that the gunmen swooped on the police station, which is about 1.2 kilometres from the banks, apparently to demobilise the policemen.

They also burnt the official vehicle of the newly posted Area Commander.

Three other persons near the police station were also killed.

At least four other persons were killed within the premises of the two banks.

It was learnt that the robbers could not gain access to the vaults of the banks.

An indigene of the community, Ofei Obende, said residents mobilised themselves and tried to resist the robbers, but they were overpowered by the invaders’ firepower.

He said that policemen attached to the banks had engaged the bandits in exchange of gunfire, which was responsible for the death of the three unidentified bodies.

Palace Secretary to the Otaru of Igarra, the paramount ruler of the community, Elder Folorunsho Dania, confirmed the incident yesterday on the phone. He said: “This is a serious case. Armed robbers have besieged Igarra. So many lives were lost; 10 bodies have been counted.

The police station was set ablaze, while the Area Commander’s new car was torched. Also, close to the police station, three people were killed. In the banks – Keystone Bank and Unity Bank – many persons were killed. In all, 10 lives have gone.

“They could not access the strong rooms of the banks. The people that were killed in the bank were outside the bank premises. Four persons were killed on the bank premises. A policeman was killed in the police station. Also, a stone throw from the police station, three persons were killed. Igarra is in a war scene; I am right at the police station.”

Six persons were killed in a similar raid in November 2015 when robbers invaded the community. Meanwhile, the Nigerian Navy has arrested four suspected members of a notorious cult group, Debam, said to have been robbing sea travellers of their valuables.
Cdr. Ikenna Okoloagu, the Base Operation Officer, Nigerian Navy Ship Pathfinder (NNS), Port Harcourt, paraded the four suspected cultists to newsmen on yesterday. He said the suspects were arrested by a naval patrol team deployed to end killings and other criminal activities in its host community of Rumuolumeni.

“This decision to heighten our security patrol follows the recently reported spate of killings in Rumuolumeni community and other forms of criminality in the state.

“The patrol team was tasked with the responsibility to ensure a safe, secure and peaceful atmosphere within the state.

“So, in the course of the patrols, on August 8, about 0845 hours, the base patrol element arrested four suspected sea robbers and members of the dreaded Debam cult group,” he said.

The officer said that the suspects were apprehended at their hideout at Iwofe waterfront with a locally made pistol and four live cartridges found in their possession.

“Additionally, controlled and banned substances such as cannabis (Indian hemp) and tramadol were found in their possession.

“The suspects were immediately brought in for questioning and they later confessed to being members of the Debam cult group,” he said. Okoloagu said the hand over to the police was done in line with the Harmonised Standard Operating Procedures that spelt out roles for security agencies in combating illegalities in the oil and gas sector.

One of the suspects, who admitted to the crime and pleaded for leniency, said that he was recruited into Debam cult by a friend when he was 19 years old. “I joined the group when I was in my Senior Secondary Three level at Community Secondary School, Rumuolumeni, in 2015.

“Immediately I joined Debam, I started saving money and later bought the gun (locally made pistol) for N15,000 for my protection.

“The gun is mine, but I have not shot or killed anybody with it,” the 22-year-old said. Lekum claimed they worked for an unnamed chairman of the National Union of Iwofe who directed them to collect levies from those engaging in illegal oil bunkering in the area.
Also, a Daura Road Chief Magistrates’ Court in Kaduna, Kaduna State, on Thursday ordered the remand of three men for alleged armed robbery.

The defendants – Rabiu Abdullahi, Ibrahim Dahiru and Anas Mohammed – are standing trial on a two-count charge of criminal conspiracy and armed robbery. The prosecutor, Insp. Akinga Akila, had told the court that the matter was transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) for further investigation.

Akila said that on July 6, at 2 p.m., the defendants robbed some passengers of their property on Ishaku Road, Ungwan Rimi in Kaduna, when they boarded a tricycle.

The prosecutor said that the passengers were robbed of their phones and wallets, containing a school’s identity card and voter’s card, before the defendants were caught. He said that the defendants confessed to committing the crime during the police investigation, adding that the offences contravened Sections 59 and 283 of the Penal Code.

Magistrate Abdulkadir Musa declined to take the plea of the defendants because the court lacked the jurisdiction to hear the matter. Musa ordered the police to forward the case file to the State Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal advice and adjourned the case until September 5.

BIG STORY

Supreme Court Affirms Tambuwal’s Victory

Avatar

Published

on

The Supreme Court on Monday upheld the election of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State as the validly elected governor of the state.

In a unanimous judgment, a seven-member panel of the court dismissed the appeal filed by the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ahmed Aliyu, for lacking in merit.

In the lead judgment, Justice Uwani Abba Aji held that the appellant grossly failed to prove that Tambuwal’s election was fraught with irregularities.

The court held that the appellant simply dumped documents on the court

Continue Reading

BIG STORY

BREAKING: Supreme Court Upholds Ganduje’s Election, Dismisses Appeal

Avatar

Published

on

The Supreme Court, on Monday, upheld the election of governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State. The apex court, in a unanimous judgement by a seven-man panel of Justices that was led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Tanko Muhammad, dismissed an appeal the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Abba Yusuf, filed to challenge the outcome of the last governorship election in the state.

Yusuf had in his appeal marked SC/1450/2019, prayed the Supreme Court to set aside the concurrent decision of both the Kano Governorship Election Petition Tribunal and the Court of Appeal, which affirmed Ganduje’s re-election.

The appellant contended that he scored the highest votes at the governorship contest that held on March 9, 2019, and satisfying section 179 (2) (a) and (b) of the 1999 Constitution, as amended.

In the notice of appeal he filed on November 30, he alleged that the Kano State Returning Officer had after results of 44 Local Government Areas were declared, cancelled results in 207 polling units in the state and declared the election as inconclusive and scheduled a re-run election for March 23, 2019.

However, in its lead judgement that was delivered by Justice Sylvester Ngwuta on Monday, the Supreme Court, said it saw no reason to dislodge the judgements of the two lower courts.

It held that facts the PDP candidate adduced before it was inconsistent with the sole ground of his appeal, adding that he failed to demonstrate that judgements of the two lower courts were perverse.

More details soon.

Continue Reading

BIG STORY

APC, PDP Go Spiritual As Supreme Court Decides Sokoto, Benue, Kano, Bauchi Polls Today

Avatar

Published

on

There is anxiety in Bauchi, Benue, Sokoto and Kano states following the tension created in view of the Supreme Court’s judgment on the governorship elections in the two states billed to be delivered today (Monday).

Some elders in the Bauchi under the aegis of the Coalition of Elders for Peace and Good Governance in Bauchi State appealed to the people to remain calm.

They made the appeal in a statement on Sunday signed by Sarkin Arewan Bauchi, Alhaji Hassan Sharif, and 19 others.

They said, “As elders, we foresee the danger in crises, and we won’t like a situation where the generation of our unborn children suffer because of the inactions of some unscrupulous elements within our midst.

“It is on this basis that we call on the good citizens of Bauchi State to maintain the tempo they are known for by accepting whatever decision the Supreme Court may make as Bauchi should be our first priority.”

The Bauchi State Government had expressed confidence that Governor Bala Mohammed would emerge victorious.

The Commissioner for Information and Communications, Dr Ladan Salihu, stated this in an interview with journalists in Abuja on Saturday

He said the apex court’s judgment sacking Emeka Ihedioha as the governor of Imo State, would not have any negative effect on Bala’s election.

Salihu also said Bala, who returned to the country from a “routine medical trip” to the United Kingdom on Saturday, was not bed-ridden as being insinuated.

He said the governor would attend the Supreme Court’s hearing on Monday.

Delivering judgment on the appeal arising from the last gubernatorial election in Imo State, a seven-member panel of the Supreme Court, led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, had sacked Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party and replaced him with Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress.

But Salihu said the situation that led to the Supreme Court’s verdict would not be applicable in the case of Bauchi State, and would, therefore, have no effect on Bala’s victory.

The commissioner said, “The case that played out in Imo State and the one that will play out in Bauchi State is as different as chalk is from cheese.

“In our own case, all the elections in all the polling units were conducted and votes were counted. All the issues that were in contention were sorted at the ballot box and at the end of the day, Governor Bala Mohammed emerged a comprehensive winner.”

Meanwhile, a civil society organization, Arewa Youth Mobilisation and Mass Mobilisation for Voting Wisely, has urged politicians and supporters of political parties in the state to avoid overheating the polity ahead of the Supreme Court’s verdict.

A spokesman for the group, Abdullahi Abdulkadir, stated this while addressing a press conference in Bauchi.

He also urged security agents to be on the alert with a view to forestalling any potential break down of law and order after the judgment.

In Kano, members of Kwankwasiyya group of the Peoples Democratic Party have embarked on fasting and prayers for the judgment to be in their favour.

Also, the All Progressives Congress members have embarked on fasting and prayers, according to sources who spoke with one of our correspondents.

The spokesman for Abba Yusuf, the PDP governorship candidate, Sanusi Tofa, said, “The party loyalists, including the entire members of the Kwankwasiya group, voluntarily declared today (Sunday) for fasting ahead of tomorrow’s (Monday) ruling.

When one of our correspondents visited the Government House on Sunday, it was observed that both Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, his deputy, Dr Nasiru Gawuana, top government functionaries and some party chieftains had gone to Abuja.

It was also learnt that loyalists of the ruling APC had embarked on fasting and prayers for the judgment to be in their favour.

Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party in Kaduna State on Sunday expressed fears over Monday’s Supreme Court judgment on the governorship elections in Bauchi, Benue, Kano, Sokoto and Plateau states.

The party said the states could go the way of Imo State.

The PDP chairman in the state, Mr Felix Hyet, made the position of the party known at a press conference.

Hyet said the PDP felt shortchanged by the judgment of the Supreme Court on Imo State.

Continue Reading

Most Popular