The Commandant-general of Mission for African Chaplaincy- a Christian organisation in Lokoja, Kogi State, Sam Keddy Balogun, has been arrested by the police for illegally possessing a firearm.
The church leader was arrested along his bodyguard with a Toyota Hilux van painted in military colour, which registration number was concealed, which the police said was being used to hoodwink unsuspecting members of the public into believing that the organisation was a paramilitary organisation recognised by law.
It was gathered that at most public functions in the state, members of the organisation kit up like military personnel and usurp the functions of the police and other security agencies and harass innocent citizens with their military camouflage.
Parading the suspects before newsmen at the police headquarters, Lokoja, yesterday, the state police commissioner, Seidu Madawaki said his men arrested one Saliu Mohammed who claims to be Balogun’s bodyguard with a short gun
The commissioner said Saliu confessed that the pistol was given to him by his boss who he said, was the commandant general of the Mission for African Chaplaincy.
Madawaki said when police detectives led the suspect to his boss’ house; the boss admitted that he was the one who gave the gun to Mohammed to be protecting him with.
He said a search was conducted on the house and two cartridges were recovered with one other already expended, as well as detectives’ gadgets and some paramilitary uniforms.
The commissioner said the painting of their vehicle in military colour and the concealing of the number plate portray an intent for criminality, adding that the activities of the chaplaincy had constituted a threat to the state as thousands of people including the jobless and civil servants had been brainwashed to join the organisation as a paramilitary organisation in the country.
While answering questions from newsmen, the commandant general admitted that he acquired the firearms illegally and pleaded with the police to forgive him, saying his organisation has been organising series of prayer sessions for the police, the military and other security agencies in the state