From Molly Kilete, Abuja
The army headquarters in Abuja said soldiers on internal security operations in Niger state have arrested a suspected fleeing bandit who was traveling to Ibadan, Oyo state to escape arrest.
The bandits said to be fleeing the state following heavy military bombardment in the ongoing anti banditry operations, was arrested during a stop and search operations conducted by soldiers along the Mokwa-Jebba road.
He was found to be in possession with a pair of camouflage uniform, military boots, knife and substance suspected to be charms.
Director Army Public Relations Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, who made this known in a statement said the suspect who was traveling from Zuru to Ibadan and claimed to be Sgt. Aminu Sule has since been handed over to the police for further investigation.
Nwachukwu in the statement said “Troops of the Nigerian Army, operating along Mokwa-Jebba road, have arrested a fleeing bandit during a stop and search operation along the road on Sunday.
“The arrest was effected at about 9:00pm, when the troops intercepted a car traveling from Zuru to Ibadan.
“The vigilant troops spotted an occupant of the vehicle, who claimed to be Sgt. Aminu Sule.
“Upon a body search, the occupant was found to be in possession of a pair of camouflage uniform, military boots, knife and substance suspected to be charms.
“On further interrogation, the suspect confessed to be traveling to Ogbomosho in Oyo state.
“He further claimed that the uniform and boots belonged to his brother who is a soldier.
“However, on closely scrutinizing the suspect, he was discovered to be fleeing from the ongoing operations in Niger state to a safe haven.
“The suspect was immediately apprehended and handed over to the police at Mokwa for further investigation.
“The heat on bandits and other criminal elements in Niger State has caused them to start fleeing to supposed safe heavens. Members of the public, particularly around Niger and contiguous states are therefore enjoined to be vigilant and report any suspected movement of fleeing bandits to security agencies.
“Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Major General Faruk Yahaya, has assured law abiding citizens of Niger State and indeed Nigeria of the safety of their lives and property.
“He further enjoined them to be wary of such sinister movements by fleeing bandits and continue to support the security agencies with useful information to enable them maintain peace and security of the country”.