Alleged Killings: Saraki cries out as IGP fights back

May 17th, 2018

*Police boss plans to frame me, says Senate President

*We’re only investigating killings in Kwara – Force Hqtr

By Ignatius Okorocha (Abuja) and Arowona Abdulazeez (Ilorin)

The Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, has alleged a plot by the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr. Ibrahim Idris, to frame him by linking him to the recent cult attacks in Kwara State.

Saraki told the Senate on Wednesday that the IGP’s plot was disclosed by the Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatai Ahmed.

The Senate under Buhari is having a running battle with the IGP over his refusal to honour the Upper House summons over the nationwide killings by armed herdsmen and other bandits.

Within a month, the IGP has thrice ignored invitations from the Senate to personally appear before it on the killing spree and other security issues.

In fact, Saraki and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, have personally taken up the matter with President Muhammadu Buhari without success.

After Saraki narrated the latest episode yesterday, the Senate set up a 10 man delegation to be led by the Senate President to meet with President Buhari on the criminal matter and the incessant arrests and intimidation of members of the National Asembly.

Members of the delegation are the Senate Leader, Senator Ahmed Lawan; the Chief Whip, Senator Olusola Adeyeye; Minority Whip, Senator Godswill Akpabio; Senator Oluremi Tinubu (APC-Lagos) and Senator Raji Rasaki (APC-Ekiti).

Others are Senator Aliyu Wammakko (APC-Sokoto), Senator Sam Egwu (PDP-Ebonyi), Senator Danjuma Goje (APC-Gombe) and Senator Abdullahi Adamu (APC-Nasarawa).

Saraki told his colleagues that Governor Ahmed brought his attention to an alleged plot by Idris to force some suspects to implicate him in a criminal matter.

He said that the governor informed him that the suspects who were arrested in Kwara for cult activities were ordered to be taken to Abuja by Idris to force them into altering their statements.

Said Saraki: “According to information available to the governor, the IGP directed the Commissioner of Police in Kwara State to immediately transfer the men to the Force Headquarters

“The plan as the governor was made to understand is that under duress, the suspects would be made to alter the statements already made in Ilorin. They will be made to implicate the Kwara State government and myself in particular in their new statement.

“This plot is part of the strategy by the IGP to settle scores over the declaration by this honourable Chamber that he is not qualified and competent to hold any public office.

“In my view, this plot is an act of desperation, blackmail, intimidation, abuse of office and crude tactics aimed at turning our country into a Police State.

“The tactics is aimed at turning the country into a state where top officials cannot be made to obey the law, follow due process and subject themselves to constituted authorities.

“I want to bring this dangerous development to the attention of all of you, the entire country and the international community so that you can be aware of the level of impunity in our country and the danger it constitutes to our democracy”.

The Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Bala Na’Allah, said that the matter should be treated with the seriousness it deserved.

He called for the setting up of a committee to investigate the matter, adding that, “in view of the fact that Saraki is involved, he should step down for the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, to preside over the setting up of the committee”.

Senator Gbenga Ashafa (APC-Lagos), said the committee should comprise of members of the Senate and the House of Representatives in view of the fact that Saraki is the chairman of the National Assembly.

The Senate Chief Whip, Senator Olusola Adeyeye, said the committee should comprise of seven lawmakers, with each from the six geopolitical zones.

Senator Sam Anyanwu (PDP-Imo), lamented the fact that lawmakers were being intimidated from carrying out their responsibilities.

Sen. Kabiru Marafa (APC-Zamfara), suggested that rather than setting up a committee to investigate the matter, the committee should visit President Buhari to inform him of the development.

Senator Emmanuel Bwacha (PDP-Taraba), decried the increased spate of intimidation of lawmakers.

Senator Isah Misau (APC-Bauchi), said that he brought the recent hounding of lawmakers to their attention when he noticed the turn of events, but was not taken seriously.

In his remark, Ekweremadu said that “we all know that the parliament is the temple of democracy.

“We have the responsibility to our people not only to preserve our democracy but to also ensure that it is purified. What the Senate President has raised today is an exposure of some of the things that are wrong with our democracy which we need to halt”.

Thereafter, the committee members were appointed with the mandate to liaise with Buhari on the matter.

Meanwhile, the Kwara State government has expressed concern over the transfer of four suspected cultists arrested in the state by the state police command to Abuja.

The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Kwara State Ministry of Justice, Jimoh Mumini, made this known after an emergency Security Council meeting chaired by Governor Ahmed on Wednesday at the Government House in Ilorin.

Jimoh noted that the offence for which the suspects were arrested were state offences which were triable under the state laws.

He said that the representative of the Commissioner of Police, Kwara State Command, Aminu Pai Saleh, said at the meeting, that the four suspects were transferred to Abuja for further investigation.

*We’re only investigating killings in Kwara – Police

However in a swift reaction, the Force Headquarters asked Saraki and Governor Ahmed not to interfere with their investigation into killings in the state

The Force spokesman, ACP Jimoh Moshood, said that the Nigeria Police Force was shocked at the “unbelievable claims, unverifiable allegations and unfounded accusations being peddled against the IGP by the Senate President”.

Moshood, in a statement, declared there was no iota of truth in the allegation, insisting it was a false assertion by Saraki against the IGP

He said that until investigations were concluded, “any person (s) or group(s) who tries to interfere in the investigation process by action or utterances is committing an offence.

“To set the records straight, the Kwara State Police Command on the 11th of May, 2018, paraded the following suspects before the media and the public, namely: Abolaji Safti Ojulari of Kankatu Area, Ilorin; Lanre Mohammed Soliu aka Askari of Ile Nda Compound, Ilorin; Azeez Moyaki of Moyaki Compound, Gambari Area, Ilorin; Suleiman Babatunde of Gambari Area, Ilorin; Yusuf Habeeb of Kangile Village, Kulende, Ilorin, and Umar Yahaya of Kangile Village, Kulende, Ilorin,” adding that the various offences and killings linked to the suspects took place between 2017 and 2018.

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