Police Lose 10 Officers, 16 Stations in Anambra, Oyo


•Arrest 477 suspects in five states

Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City, Ibrahim Shuaibu in Kano, Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan, Ibrahim Oyewale in Lokoja, David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka and Daji Sani in Yola

The police commands in Anambra and Oyo States yesterday said they lost 10 officers and 16 stations to hoodlums during the #EndSARS protests.

Oyo State Commissioner for Police, Mr. Chucks Enwonwu, said six policemen were killed while five police stations were burnt by hoodlums during the violence that trailed the #EndSARS protest in the state.

In Anambra, four policemen were killed while 11 stations were burnt.
However, the police have arrested 477 suspects involved in the looting and arson in Anambra, Adamawa, Kogi, Kano and Edo States.

A total of 35 tractors and one AK-47 rifle were also recovered from the suspects.
But the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command warned suspects that returning goods looted from warehouses storing COVID-19 palliatives and other items may not stop them from being prosecuted.

While nine suspects were arrested in Oyo, 17 were arrested in Anambra, 126 in Edo, 56 in Kogi, 31 in Kano and 238 in Adamawa.

The Oyo State police commissioner, who addressed journalists yesterday in Ibadan, confirmed that nine suspects were arrested in connection with arson and looting in Iseyin, in the Iseyin Local Government Area of the state .

The suspects were paraded before journalists at the briefing.
Enwonwu, while bemoaning the killing of the policemen, said some of them were gruesomely murdered.

He said six persons, who were arrested in Ogbomoso during the EndSARS violence in the town, had been charged to court. The police are also on the trail of more suspects.

“Six police officers were gruesomely murdered, police patrol vehicles were burnt down and exhibits looted in the exhibits room with many police arms and ammunition carted away due to activities of criminal elements who capitalised on the protest to perpetrate their heinous crimes .

“Nonetheless , the Oyo State Police Command has arrested no fewer than nine suspected arsonists and looters for allegedly attacking the Divisional Police headquarters , Iseyin on Thursday, 22 October , 2020 and thereafter setting the station ablaze under the pretext of #EndSARS protests that lingered for so many days .

“A team of policemen attached to the unit moved swiftly to the area and in the process, nine of the arsonists and criminal looters were arrested in connection with the crimes while some exhibits were recovered from them.

He gave the names of the suspects as Taoreed Hamsat a. k. a Shorlex, 26 years; Tajudeen Ibrahim a .k .a Aji, 40 years; Moshood Fatai a .k .a Elewure, 39 years and Musibau Abubakar a .k. a Stainless, 21 years .

Other suspects are: Sikiru Aliu a. k. a 1414, 25 years; Fasasi Fatai a. k. a Lemon, 24 years; Isiaka Olaniyi, 32 years; Raheem Toheeb and Adeleke Akeem, 42 years.

Enwonwu lauded some residents of the state for warding off arsonists who attempted to burn down police stations in their areas.

The Edo State Police Command also paraded 126 suspects in connection with jailbreak, looting and vandalism in the wake of the #ENDSARS protest in the state.

Giving a breakdown of those arrested, the state Commissioner of Police, Johnson Kokumo, said 106 were arrested for breaking stores, looting and arson; 10 re-arrested for escaping from prison and 10 others arrested for other offences.

“As you are all aware, the hoodlums burnt down police stations, carted away arms and ammunition, raped women in some areas, killed policemen on their gory path to destruction, freed convicted criminals and felons, looted businesses and extorted innocent Nigerians.

“The command is currently pained by the havoc caused by the mobs and hoodlums, masquerading as protesters who were united by a common criminality,” he stated.

The Edo CP regretted that the stolen arms would be unleashed on members of the public, noting, however, that as the looting and destruction were taking place, the police and other security agencies were able to arrest some of the arsonists, looters and escapees.

“Also, on October 27, at Oliha Market Junction, Benin City, two armed robbers named Michael Peter ‘m’ and OZ Esi ‘m,’ were arrested by officers of the Nigerian Army, attached to 4 Brigade Headquarters, Benin City for allegedly attempting to snatch a Honda Civic Car with Reg. No. AA-261-AY from one Mr. John Destiny of No. 40 Agbonlahor Street, Aduwawa Benin City.

“Some of the suspects arrested are four hoodlums – Charles Okoeguale ‘m’, Ojo Osamiemwenfan Igbinoba ‘m’, Gift Osayiwu ‘m’ and Osasumwen Imanawe ‘m’, who were seen with police rifles, uniforms and other items carted away by hoodlums who invaded the several police stations during “ENDSARS” protest,” he said.

The Kogi State Police Command has also arrested no fewer than 56 suspected looters/vandals who vandalised government facilities in Lokoja, the state capital, between Sunday night and Monday.

The state Commissioner of Police, Ayuba Ede, while parading the suspects in Lokoja, said the arrest was in line with the directives by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, to reclaim the public space and restore normalcy across the federation and to bring an end to wanton violence, killing, looting and the destruction of public and private property.

Ede explained that consequent upon the reports of looting of some government facilities in Lokoja metropolis on Monday, he mobilised and personally led other heads of other security agencies and coordinated the operation to halt further slide into lawlessness and brigandage.

He noted that the ongoing operation led to the arrest of 56 suspected looters of Agricultural Development Project, essential drug warehouse and Federal Ministry of Agriculture offices in Lokoja and recoveries of some looted items.

The Adamawa State Police Commissioner, Olugbenga Adeyanju, also yesterday said his command had arrested 238 suspected vandals and looters.

Adeyanju told reporters in Yola, the state capital, that the suspects were responsible for the vandalism and theft of public and private property across the state.

He said the police also recovered 35 tractors, 22 hand tractor hoes, 28 hand tractors, 12 tricycles, nine vehicles and farm tools.

According to him, the command, in collaboration with other sister security agencies, has so far dealt with all acts of lawlessness in the state.

“As I speak, we have 238 males and females suspects. One hundred and eighty four were apprehended for breaking/looting government, private and corporate warehouses in the state while 54 were arrested for violating the state government curfew,” he said.

Adeyanju added that 12 tricycles and nine vehicles were also confiscated while conveying looted property.

In Anambra State, the police arrested 17 suspects and recovered an AK-47 rifle, suspected to have been stolen by hoodlums from a police division during the violent protests in the state.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr. John Abang, who briefed journalists in Awka, also paraded the 17 suspects arrested for arson and looting during the protests.

Abang reeled out police facilities burnt during the protest and police officers killed.

“The hoodlums set ablaze 11 police stations; burnt over 20 vehicles, including patrol and exhibit vehicles and an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC).

“They also vandalised six other police stations and carted away motorcycles kept as exhibits. The police also lost some rifles during the attacks.

“In the course of these heinous acts, the hoodlums murdered four police officers, including the Divisional Police Officer (DPO), Osumenyi Division, CSP Akpan Joseph; ASP Agu Micheal, the Station Officer (SO), Osumenyi Division and a young PC Udegbunam Sunday Celestine, leaving two others injured.

“In their state of callousness, the hoodlums also murdered and beheaded Inspector John Oche attached to the Anti-Cult Unit and burnt his body to ashes parading the streets with the deceased policeman’s head,” he added.

He said the suspects were arrested with some exhibits, including one pump action rifle, one axe, three cutlass, one smoke grenade and some quantities of dry leaves suspected to be cannabis sativa.

“One AK-47 rifle stolen from Ogbunike Division has been recovered by operatives of the command,” he said.

He listed the suspects arrested to include Matthew Vincent ‘m’ aged 29 years of Izza North LGA of Ebonyi State, Aguonu Chinedu Victor ‘m’ aged 24 years of Otolo Nnewi; Ezenagwu Ekene ‘m’ aged 32 years of Awka South LGA; Chukwuebuka Obianefo ‘m’ aged 36 years of Ihiala LGA, and Okonkwo Stanley ‘m’ aged 37 years of Bende LGA of Abia State.

Others are Obumneme Omezuluike ‘m’ aged 30 years of Bende LGA of Abia State, Onyiuke Odinaka Izuchukwu ‘m’ aged 26 years of Njikoka LGA of Anambra State, Chukwuweike Enweozo ‘m’ aged 30 years of Onitsha North LGA, Chibuzo Otiaba ‘m’ aged 22 years of Njikoka LGA of Anambra State,
Ebuka Nkwoego ‘m” aged 26 years of Ojenya Agbaja LGA of Ebonyi State, Emmanuel Okafor ‘m’ aged 21 years of Anambra East LGA, and Kelechi Onyekwere ‘m’ aged 34 years of Osisioma North LGA of Abia State.

Also arrested are Onyeka Egbemadu ‘m’ aged 23 years of Ihiala LGA of Anambra State, Samson Okoli ‘m’ aged 23 years of Ihiala LGA of Anambra State,

Ugochukwu Nwagboso ‘m’ aged 38 years of Ihiala LGA of Anambra State, Nwankpa Ejike ‘m’ aged 26 years of Izza North LGA of Ebonyi State and Nwankpa Izuchukwu ‘m’ aged 20 years of Izza North LGA of Ebonyi State.

The police in Kano State have also arrested 31 suspected looters who vandalised private facilities and carted away valuables in the wake of the EndSARS protest in the state.

The state Police Commissioner, Mr. Habu Sani, told reporters yesterday in Kano that the arrest and recovery of items followed intelligence.

Sani explained that the protesters, who perpetrated the heinous crime under the guise of peaceful protest, invaded private shopping malls and business facilities.

He regretted that what started as peaceful demonstration later turned violent, leading to the burning of eight vehicles, vandalism of 38 shops, including the popular Galaxy Mall on Igbo Road Sabon Gari, and Chicken Republic on airport road.

Returning Loots Won’t Save Suspects, Says FCT Command

However, the FCT Police Command has said returning goods looted from warehouses storing COVID-19 palliatives and other items may not shield suspects from prosecution.

The Commissioner of Police, FCT Command, Bala Ciroma, while featuring on a television programme, said stealing is a crime in Nigeria.

According to him, the return of looted goods won’t change the fact that a crime has been committed.

The police commissioner, however, said cases would be handled based on their merit.

“In a situation where people come to return goods, the fact remains did you commit an offence or not? We will get our legal experts to look at it and we will decide what to do with it.

“We will conclude our investigations and the legal experts will look at it accordingly but the fact remains that a crime has been committed,” he stated.

He said the police had been able to arrest persons who looted warehouses while some property had been recovered.

He promised to prosecute all the suspects.