Nigeria: Police Insist Saraki Must Appear in Person

Senate President, Bukola Saraki.

The Nigeria Police Force yesterday made a U-turn and insisted that Senate President Bukola Saraki must appear in person to explain his alleged links to the perpetrators of the April 5 multiple bank robberies in Offa, Kwara State, where 33 persons were killed. Parading the two new suspects, Alhaji Kehinde Gobiri (Captain) and Alhaji Oba Olododo (Jakwando) at the force headquarters, Abuja, the police spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, explained that the suspects have provided information about their connections to the Senate president.

Moshood noted that the suspects were part of the notorious political thugs in possession of firearms and other dangerous weapons working for the Senate president in the Kwara Central Senatorial District.

He added that Gobiri and Olododo have admitted to various crimes and criminalities they committed in Kwara Central Senatorial District under the guise of political thuggery for the Senate President. Moshood disclosed that efforts are ongoing to apprehend the third suspect, Alhaji Dona, who is still at large. The Force PRO insisted that the Police did not direct the Senate president to write down his defence, adding that investigators are expecting the embattled lawmaker to appear for interrogations. Moshood stated that investigations showed that three gang leaders who participated actively in the Offa bank robberies, Akinnibosun, Ibukunle Ogunleye aka Arrow and Adeola Abraham followed Saraki to Oloffa's Palace when he paid a condolence visit to Offa after the robberies.

He said, "New revelations from further investigation into the matter show that all the five gang leaders namely; Akinnibosun, Ogunleye, Abraham, Salawudeen Azeez and Niyi Ogundiran have direct connection to the Senate President as new pictures of one of the five gang leaders when paraded by the police earlier in the week was in 'Aso Ebi' (trouser) used during the Senate President daughter's wedding. "The gang leaders further admitted that they attended the Senate President daughter's wedding held recently."

Noting that it was only the police that could issue a statement about the ongoing investigation, he said that Saraki is still being expected for interrogation by the police.

Moshood stated: "The Nigeria Police Force will not be cowed or succumb to intimidation from any quarter in carrying out a thorough and discreet investigation into the Offa bank robberies where significant successes have been recorded.

"The ongoing investigation will be driven to a logical conclusion. Meanwhile, the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki is still under investigation in connection to the robbery and the Nigeria Police Force will do everything possible within the ambit of the law to ensure that justice is done in this case." Meanwhile, Akinnibosu in an interview claimed that his gang members went with the Senate President to visit the Olofa's palace, but not on his invitation, adding that they heard about the visit through Saraki's friend, Samshudeen Baca who invited them.

He said, "I have a friend, he is a politician close to the Senate President. His name is Samshudeen Bada. He was the one that called me and told me that the Senate President was going to Offa so I called Kunle Arrow and I called Adex that the Senate President is going to Offa. "I went with my Lexus SUV to pick them and we went to Offa and on getting there, not quite 10-15 minutes, the Senate President was done. When he was done with the Olofa, he said he was going to Ilorin. We followed him; when we got to a village, Eleyeoka, he stopped to ease himself. Senator Ibrahim Rafiu (Saraki's friend) now gave us N50,000. He gave the money to me." Asked about how he got the Aso-ebi (ceremony uniform) that was worn during Saraki's daughter's wedding, Abraham said it was provided by Akinnibosu. He noted that he had no direct relationship with the Senate president, even as he insisted that he was just a mere political follower.

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