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Published On: Mon, Jun 4th, 2018

Offa bank robbery: Police invite Saraki, Gov. Ahmed over gang’s confessions

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  • I’ll honour IV, says SP, as Kwara gov rejects charges
  • DSS withdraws senate president, speaker’s operatives

By Tobias Lengnan Dapam, Ikechukwu Okaforadi and Musa Adamu Abuja

The Nigeria Police Force has invited the Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed to the Force Intelligence Response Team office at Guzape, Abuja to answer questions over confessions of gang members who took part in the Offa bank robbery.
This is coming weeks after Saraki, raised an alarm that the police was planning to transfer some gang members arrested in Kwara and force them to indict him and the governor of the state.
However, while the Senate president offered to honour Police invitation, the Kwara State governor has out rightly rejected Police allegations, saying he does not fund thugs.
The duo reacted in separate statements on Sunday.
The Force Headquarters in a statement issued yesterday by its Public Relations Officer (PRO), Jimoh Moshood, said “the five gang leaders namely; Ayoade Akinnibosun, Ibukunle Ogunleye, Adeola Abraham, Salawudeen Azeez, Niyi Ogundiran and some of the other 17 suspects arrested for direct involvement and active participation in the Offa bank robbery and the gruesome killing of 33 innocent persons which includes (some pregnant women and nine Police personnel admitted, confessed and volunteered statements that they were political thugs of the Senate President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Sen. Bukola Saraki and the Executive Governor of Kwara State, Alh. Abdulfatah Ahmed, under the name; Youth Liberation Movement a.k.a “Good Boys”
The statement said in the course of discreet investigation into the confessions of these five gang leaders and the other seventeen principal suspects, a Lexus jeep GX-300 (Ash Colour) with a sticker plate number with inscription “SARAKI” “Kwara, State of Harmony” used by the gang leader (Ayoade Akinnibosun ‘M’ 37Yrs) during the bank robbery was taken to Government House, Ilorin on 16th May, 2018 where the sticker plate number with inscription “SARAKI” “Kwara, State of Harmony” was removed before another plate number (Reg. No. Kwara, KMA 143 RM) registered in the name of Ayoade AKinnibosun the Overall Commander of the Offa Bank Robbery was then attached to the vehicle to cover up the identity of the said vehicle.
“The exhibit vehicle was subsequently recovered from the premises of the Min. of Environmental and Forestry in Ilorin, Kwara State. While the sticker plate number with inscription “SARAKI” “Kwara, State of Harmony” removed from the vehicle was recovered from one Adeola Omiyale who drove the said Lexus Jeep to Government House, Ilorin immediately after the Bank Robbery.”
The statement further said that the Personal Assistant (Political) to the Executive Governor of Kwara State, Mr. Alabi Olalekan, who was privy to information that the Police is looking for the Lexus Jeep as an exhibit used in the Offa Bank Robbery, directed one Adeola Omiyale to relocate the Lexus Jeep to Government House, Ilorin.
“The PA (Political) is currently in Police custody and has made useful statement assisting the Police in further investigation into the case.
A revolver pistol and pump action gun were recovered by the Police Investigation Team from the Personal Assistant (Political) to the Executive Governor of Kwara State, Mr. Alabi Olalekan’s Farm where he directed his brother to hide them after his arrest by the Police.
“In order to conceal evidence, the Chief of Staff to the Executive Governor of Kwara State, Mr. Yusuf Abdulwahab who has been arrested and taken into Police custody, arranged the removal of the sticker plate number with inscription “SARAKI” “Kwara, State of Harmony” from the exhibit vehicle and also registered the exhibit Lexus Jeep used in the Offa Bank Robbery in the name of Ayoade AKinnibosun, the overall Gang Commander of the Offa Bank Robbery while the Ayoade AKinnibosun was already in Police custody for more than six days before the registration of the vehicle”.
The Senate President, said that he will honour police invitation when served, as a law abiding citizen of the country, even though he denied having any hand in the Offa robbery, of which he described as police ploy to implicate him as he had earlier reported.
A statement issued by his Special Adviser (Media and Publicity), Yusuph Olaniyonu, titled “Saraki: Our Response to Claims By Police”, said “Saraki will want the entire public to disregard this claim as a baseless allegation and another ploy by the Police to implicate him by all means.”
He said, “As a person who has utmost respect for the rule of law and all constitutional institutions, when the invitation from the Police is formally extended to me, I will be ready to honour it without any delay.”
In his reaction, Governor Ahmed, refuted police allegations of sponsoring, funding, arming or otherwise supporting political thuggery.
In a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Communication, Muyideen Akorede, Mr Ahmed described the allegations as false and rejected his alleged indictment by the Nigeria police or the armed robbery suspects in their custody.
Mr Ahmed said while the state government has empowered several youth groups under its acclaimed Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) scheme, neither he nor the statement government can be held liable for how beneficiaries utilised the credit.
Meanwhile, The Cable reported yesterday that the Department of State Services (DSS) has recalled half of its operatives assigned to Senate President Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara.
This is coming ahead of today’s talks between Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and the nPDP team to be led by Dogara.
TheCable said it understands that the security operatives attached to the two presiding officers of the national assembly were directed to report to the DSS headquarters “with immediate effect”.
According to the online medium, no reason was given for the withdrawal, although it is believed to have been at the instance of the presidency.
TheCable, however, said it could not confirm the development from the DSS, which has not had a spokesperson since Lawal Daura was appointed its director-general in 2015.
The online medium said sources at the national assembly confirmed the recall of the operatives.

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