From Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Two houses belonging to a wanted suspected kidnapper and armed robber known as Aondofa Cephas Chekele (alias Azonto) were on Monday demolished by the orders of the Benue State government.
Azonto, Daily Sun gathered, is second in command to the slain Benue militia warlord, Terwase Akwaza alias Gana who was killed by the military on September 8, 2020.
The demolition of the houses located at North Bank in Makurdi was carried out under the Benue State law of anti kidnapping 2017 signed by Governor Samuel Ortom.
The law – Abduction, Hostage Taking, Kidnapping, Secret Cult and Other Related Offense (2017) – was signed along the Benue State anti open grazing Law in 2017.
It was gathered that men of the police team codenamed Operation Zenda JTF, acting on tip off, had earlier picked one of Azonto’s main man, Torlumun Steven and his (Azonto) first wife, Mwuese in Benue State.
The duo were reportedly nabbed with millions of naira meant for buying arms and ammunitions and properties for Azonto who allegedly operates from his hideouts somewhere in the forest and commits all manners of criminal acts.
Both Torlumun and Mwuese were said to have led the commander of Operation Zenda JTF, CSP Justine Gberindyer and other police officers to the two houses.
They were said to have confessed that the houses were used as kidnapping den where Azonto hides his victims and negotiates ransom on their heads.
The first house, hich is located off Federal Housing Estate Phase 1 Nortbank, is a four bedroom apartment and the second house located within the same area is a two bedroom flat belonging to Azonto were pulled down in the presence of staff of Urban Development Board and Azonto’s neighbuors.
Speaking with reporters shortly after the demolition, the Commander of Operation Zenda JTF, CSP Gberindyer, said the police will not rest until all kidnappers are brought to their knees in the state.