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Monday, December 11, 2023

Odili: Arrested suspects still in our custody, says IGP



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The police yesterday reassured that they would get to the root of the siege to the Abuja home of Supreme Court Justice Mary Odili  12 days ago by a suspected criminal syndicate.

They also said the 14 persons, including a fake Chief Superintendent of Police(CSP) Lawrence Ajodo, arrested in connection with the incident, were still in detention.

Inspector-General of Police Alkali Usman stated this when Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike led a delegation of elders and elected representatives of the state to the Louis Edet House  Force Headquarters in Abuja.

Usman told the team that a magistrate whose name he did not give confirmed issuing the search warrant and that the Attorney-General of the Federation and Justice Minister Abubakar Malami maintained that he did not know the fake CSP.

The fake CSP  had while being paraded with the 13 other arrested suspects claimed to be a consultant on recoveries to Malami.

The IGP , according to a statement by Wike’s Special Assistant(Media), Kelvin Ebiri, disclosed to the visiting Rivers State delegation that the police had not relented in their efforts to resolve the confusion surrounding the botched invasion of Odili’s home.

He said as a part of their ongoing investigations,  the police wrote to the Chief Registrar of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) requesting the release of the magistrate that issued the search warrant, but instead, his statement was submitted to the police.

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His words:  “We wrote a letter to the Chief Registrar of FCT to release the magistrate, and instead of releasing him, they replied to our letter, plus his statement to us.

“We didn’t want to pick any quarrel. What we needed was the statement. We are working on the statement. He has not denied the fact that he  issued a search warrant and that is what we wanted to confirm.”

Alkali also said based on the statement of fake CSP Ajodo, the police interviewed Malami,  who denied knowing him (Ajodo).

He added that the AGF  confirmed that his ministry initially constituted a recovery team, which was disbanded a long time ago.

The IGP disclosed that  Ajodo  also told the police  that he  lifted the AGF’s signature from a document and imposed it on his fake identity card.”

The statement by Ebiri explained that the team was at the Force Headquarters to appeal to the IGP  to unravel the real motive behind the siege.

Wike said it was curious that weeks after the incident, the magistrate had not been interrogated to account for his action.

The governor, who commended  Usman and his team for the arrest of some of the 14  suspects,  charged the police to get to the root of the matter in order to ensure that all those directly or indirectly involved faced the full wrath of the law.

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He said: “We believe, we should get to the root of this matter and anybody who is directly or indirectly involved should face the wrath of the law. It does not matter the person’s position. That is the only way somebody can stop saying if a Justice of Supreme Court, second in command, could face this,  what about the ordinary people, what will happen?”

The governor expressed concern that if all culprits were not arrested and prosecuted, law-abiding citizens would be reluctant to grant access to their residence to anyone that brandished a search warrant at them.

He assured the Police that the Rivers State government would not relent in its support for the police and other security agencies.

The governor was in company with   Senators Betty Apiafi,  George Sekibo,   Barry Mpigi,  Lee Maeba,   Olaka Nwogu, and Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani.

Others are former Presidents of Nigerian Bar Association, Onueze C.J Okocha (SAN) and Okey Wali (SAN); former Minister of Transport, Dr. Abiye Sekibo and former President of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People(MOSOP) Ledum Mitee.

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