Wole Ayodele in Jalingo
A police operative attached to the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and a kidnap suspect had lost their lives on Monday in ghastly motor accident along Wukari-Ibi Road in Taraba State.
The police team was on their way to Ibi along with eight suspects to arrest a suspected kidnap kingpin, when the Toyota Hummer bus in which they were travelling had a tyre burst and somersaulted few kilometres away from where the Wadume incident occurred last month.
Confirming the incident, Public Relations Officer, Taraba State Police Command, ASP David Misal, told THISDAY in a telephone interview that the operatives were going to Ibi on a special investigation when the accident occurred.
He added that while the remains of the deceased have been deposited at an undisclosed mortuary, other occupants of the vehicle who sustained varying degrees of injuries are receiving treatment in a particular hospital.
THISDAY gathered that several suspects have been arrested in connection with kidnapping at Ibi and other parts of the state since a kidnap kingpin, Bala Hamisu, popularly called Wadume was rearrested by the police.
Besides, several others linked to the suspected kingpin, who is very popular among the people of his community for his philanthropy, are said to have gone underground for fear of being arrested by the police.
Meanwhile, THISDAY learnt that no fewer than 60 vehicles and motorcycles believed to have been acquired by Wadume through the proceeds of kidnapping have been seized and confiscated by the police.
The vehicles were said to have been recovered at Ibi, Wukari, Takum, Jalingo and other parts of the state most of which were recovered from his beneficiaries.