A 72-year-old Ahmed Adoke, an uncle to the former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Mohammed Adoke, has been arrested by special security squad for allegedly involved in the spate of kidnappings that have recently taken over the state. He was among the 45 that were paraded to newsmen in Lokoja and accused of belonging to the gang of kidnappers and armed robbery.
Also paraded was the All Progressive Congress, (APC) candidate for the Okehi constituency in the state House of Assembly in the last election, Idris Ozi Shuabu; and a cripple who were paraded for being an accessory to the criminal gang terrorizing the people of the state.
Addressing newsmen in Lokoja, the Force Public Relations Officer, Commissioner of Police Emmanuel Ojukwu, said the harvest of arrests was consequent on the Special Anti- Crime Task Force led by Chris Ezike, a Commissioner of Police of the Federal Special Anti- Robbery Squad assigned by the Inspector General (IG) to combat the menace of kidnapping and armed robbery rocking the state.
“Following the upsurge in the activities of high profile kidnapping and armed banditry along theAuchi-Okene-Lokoja, Ajaokuta-Lokoja, Kabba-Obajana highways, the IG, Solomon Arase, directed the Special Anti-crime Task Force to relocate to Kogi State and quickly address the situation.
“The team, which arrived Lokoja on May 27, 2015 and was supported by a strong force of 350 specialists police officers drawn from across Nigeria swung into action in earnest with the arrests of over 45 criminals from mostly the central senatorial district of the state.
“In the past three weeks, the squad quickly design a template to contain the situation, identify all criminal syndicates, identify kidnappers hideout and carry out sporadic raids of their houses. Today, 45 persons have been arrested in connection to the criminal activities in the state during the operation,” Ojukwu disclosed.
The force PRO alleged that the high rates of criminality in the state was due to the engagement of youths in thuggery and political violence, sponsored by highly placed politicians who have over the years recycled the hoodlums.
He stressed that it was their assistance in procuring illicit firearms that was responsible for criminality in the state
Ojukwu gave other reasons behind the criminality as Kogi State being the gateway to over nine states which criss cross the state to Abuja, the nation capital; the intra and inter clan conflicts which resulted in avoidable violence and free use of firearms; the rising influence of hard drugs and other intoxicating substances; cultism; and the activities of awaiting trial and convicted criminals, who escaped from Koton/karfe prison during the two infamous jail breaks in 2013 and 2014.”
Ojukwu who said during the three weeks operation, one police officer, Benjamin Agada, from Enugu State was killed, urged the people of the state to embrace the N5 Million promised by the state governor, Capt. Idris Wada, as compensation for anyone who gives useful information towards the smashing of kidnappers gang.
Items recovered during the three weeks operation are two AK47; nine single and double barrel guns; gun manufacturing equipment; cutlasses and other weapons. [myad]