...Six dead in attacks on banks, police station
DETAINED Senator Ali Ndume’s bank accounts have been frozen, The Nation learnt last night.
Also frozen are the accounts of members of Boko Haram (Western education is a sin) arrested by security agencies.
Ndume, who is alleged to be one of the sponsors of Boko Haram, is standing trial with Ali Sanda Konduga, the sect’s spokesman whose father says is insance, before a Chief Magistrate’s Court in Abuja for criminal intimidation.
Also, it was learnt that the State Security Service (SSS) may be compelled to release alleged “damaging text messages” between Ndume and Konduga to prove the depth of its investigation.
It was gathered also that the United Nations House was not the original target of the August 26 suicide bomber.
It was learnt that the bomber made a detour from the original target based on the instruction of one of the sponsors being investigated.
The government froze Ndume’s accounts, pending the conclusion of his trial, in line with a Gazette of Regulations recently released by the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mohammed Bello Adoke (SAN).
A source, who pleaded for anonymity because of the “sensitivity” of the matter, said: “It is true that Ndume’s accounts have been frozen, until the conclusion of his trial. This is in line with a gazette of the government which was recently published to fight against terrorists and their sponsors.
“Besides Ndume, all the accounts of all suspects arrested for terrorism will remain embargoed till the determination of the allegations against them.
“Even MEND leader Henry Okah and others arrested for collaborating with him cannot have access to their accounts.”
The source said the Gazette of Regulations are in line with the Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011, the Charter of the United Nations and UN Resolutions 1267(1999), 1333(2000), 1373(2001), 1390(2002), 1452(2002), 1455(2003), 1526(2004), 1617(2005), 1735(2006), 1822(2008), 1904(2009) and 1988(2011).
The Gazette states: “The funds or other economic resources owned, held or controlled, directly or indirectly by a designated person whose name and other details are on the Lists shall be frozen.
“Freezing of funds shall be without prejudice to the rights of third parties acting in good faith.
“For the purpose of sub-regulation(1) of this Regulation, in determining whether funds are controlled by a designated person, the fact that such funds are held in the name of an associate or relation is immaterial.
“Where the name of a person or of an entity is confirmed to be on the Lists, the Institution shall block the funds or any other economic resources identified as belonging to or connected with the person or entity on the lists and shall ensure that the account is not operated and thereafter forward to the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).
“All funds and other economic resources frozen under this Regulation shall be recorded against the names of the owners and beneficial owners for proper management.”
Another source said the SSS may be “compelled to release some indicting text messages between Ndume and Ali Konduga.”
The source added: “At the appropriate time, Nigerians will know who is telling the truth or who is sane or insane.
“We have conducted meticulous investigations which cannot be rubbished by any flimsy excuse of insanity.”
Latest clues by a suspect arrested in connection with the UN House bombing have confirmed that the building was not the original target.
But the suspect, who is yet to disclose the original target, told security agencies that one of Boko Haram’s sponsors directed the suicide bomber to the UN House to draw global attention.
Another source said: “When we interrogated the suspect, he said: ‘the original intention was not to hit the UN, but we were advised to go there by one of our sponsors to get international attention. We never knew the building before; we were taken there a day before we struck.”
“This latest confession explained why we have not closed investigation into the bombing of the UN House.”
An attack on Police facilities and three banks in Azare, headquarters of Kategum Local Government Area of Bauchi State yesterday led to the death of six people.
Among the dead is a soldier, a policeman and four civilians.
Although no group has claimed responsibility, the pattern of the attack is similar to Boko Haram’s.
Bauchi State Police Commissioner Ayo Aduba who confirmed the casualty figure, declined to reveal their identities.
He said: “The attackers came with 20 rocket launchers and locally made bombs. They launched the attack from outside the Police Area Command’s headquarters and completely destroyed the building that houses the Azare Police Divisional Headquarters and the Area Commander’s office.
The Police Commissioner added: “But for the prompt spirited response and resistance by the over 30 policemen on duty and those in the police barracks, the number of casualties would have been far more than what we have seen.”
Aduba said the “exchange of gun fire power between the police and the hoodlums lasted for four hours compelled the attackers to retreat without trace,but the clot of blood and blood stained spattered outside the Police perimeter fence of the Area Commander’s office showed our men gained an upper hand’’.
He did not give the names of the bank and the amount of money looted by the invaders.
The attack was simultaneously launched on the home of Alhaji Mohammad Ali (a.k.a. Ali Kwara), an Azare based famous local hunter and a crime buster.
“Bauchi State remains a flash point with seven border outlets. Our intelligence source clearly indicates that the invaders are from one of these neighboring states. We appeal to traditional rulers to assist the police with information that could help security agents track criminals,” the police chief said.
The police boss advocated the formation of vigilance outfits in various communities across the state to reduce the crime rate.
Source: The Nation