The nonagenarian wondered why the police authorities are going after four junior officers who were merely carrying out instructions from their superiors.
Godwin Tsa and Molly Kilete, Abuja
Elder statesman and leader of the South-South region, Chief Edwin Clark, has revealed the identity of top police officers allegedly involved in the raiding of his Abuja residence on Tuesday on information that he was stockpiling arms in his house. Clark, who is demanding a full blown investigation into the matter, named a Deputy Commissioner of Police, Yusuf Kolo, Commander of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Tactical Squad and Assistant Inspector General of Police, Federal Intelligence, Umoru Usman as those who instructed the raid and search on his residence.
This was contained in two separate petitions addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major-General Mohammed Babagana Monguno (Rtd). In the petitions with reference number KACCL/ PET/KA/76/18, dated September 6, 2018 and signed by his lawyer, Dr. Kayode Ajulo, Clark said though he has accepted the public apology from the police, he want the matter to be thoroughly investigated.
In the said petitions, the nonagenarian wondered why the police authorities that should know the masterminds and conspirators of the invasion are going after the four junior officers, who were merely carrying out instructions from their superiors.
The petition reads: “Our client did brief us that at about 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 4, 2018, officers and men of the IGP Tactical Squad, a unit under the direct command of the Inspector General of Police, alongside pressmen invaded and ransacked his Asokoro residence on the pretext that they were in search of arms and ammunitions. However, despite the siege and search, they found nothing incriminating on our client.
“Our client further briefed us and we confirmed that at the point where officers and men of the IGP Tactical Squad were to commence their search, they introduced themselves as acting under the instructions of the Inspector General of Police and Deputy Commissioner of Police, Yusuf Kolo, who is their commander. Former SSG, Bayelsa State and former Permanent Secretary Ministry of Power, Ambassador Boladei Igali, who was with our client at the venue of the search, put a call through to the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Federal Intelligence, Umoru Usman Shehu, who spoke with the leader of the search party and gave authority to go ahead with the search.
“Having so searched in vain, the Inspector General of Police, in the face of the impudent search conducted on the property of our client, has publicly denied any knowledge of the said search and has immediately ordered the arrest of the four junior officers, who were responsible for the search and tendered a public apology to our client.
“Taking into consideration the circumstances of the invasion and uncivilized search conducted on his property, and the attendant embarrassment caused to our client and what he stands for, it is imperative to hold the view that there are serious questions which ought to be determined forthwith and without mincing words.
“It will be rather unfortunate for junior officers and men of the IGP Tactical squad who were at best acting on the orders of their superiors to fall prey in this regard. It beats our client’s imagination that despite the fact that our client has the compliments of the Nigerian Police Force and the State Security Services protecting him, his property, and overseeing his daily activities, such level of conspiracy could be perpetuated against him. He wonders what exactly warranted such unfounded suspicion on his person to the extent that a search warrant could be procured against him on the demeaning allegation that he is involved in gun running.
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“Our client appreciates unreserved double apologies by the Nigerian Police; the first which was conveyed by the delegation of the IGP lead by Deputy Inspector General of Police, Habila Joshak (Operations), Assistant Inspector General of Police, David Ogbodo (Legal), Commissioner of Police, Abu Sani (IGP Monitoring Unit) and Commissioner of Police of FCT and the second which was publicly tendered on behalf of the Nigerian Police Force by the Force Public Relations Officer, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Jimoh Moshood.
“While our client accepts the apologies, it is his sole demand that this case be comprehensively probed and thoroughly investigated to fish out all the conspirators who masterminded the invasion of his residence without due cause.”
When contacted the Force public relations officer Jimoh Moshood, said: “With all due respect to the elder statesman, we have done everything to investigate that matter. When the incident occurred, IGP directed an investigation promptly and that the personnel who went there should be investigated and detained and that was carried out.
“And that same night, the IGP sent a delegation to the elder statesman to apologize to him and the DIG with the others that went said the apology was accepted by him. There is no institution that would allow its personnel, on their own, to carry out an unauthorized and illegal activities as we have reported.
“And based on that, it is not Kolo that tried these personnel. It is the provost office that tried the men and found them guilty and dismissed them from service, which the IGP approved. If you ask some of your colleagues, they will tell you that Kolo was at parade of suspect that Monday helps along the Abuja/Kaduna highway. He was within that vicinity and he was not in Abuja at the time. “So, we plead for more understanding from the elder statesmen. But we want Nigerians to know that Kolo was not behind it. If he has sent a petition, then the IGP will investigate but I want to make it clear to the public that we seek for more understanding from the elder statement that it is not Kolo that is behind it. Those that were behind it have been dismissed and the officer is undergoing interdiction now and the police service commission would determine his fate.”