Police arrest, parade suspected kidnappers of Ekiti pupils

By Ologeh Joseph Chibu

The Ekiti State Police Command has arrested key suspects in the kidnap of children of Apostolic Faith located in Emure Ekiti.

The Commissioner of Police in Ekiti State, CP Akinwale Adeniran said the arrest came after diligent and meticulous investigation

The suspects are
Abubakar Aliyua, Umaru Saliu, Mohammed Bashiru who is a member of Miyetti Allah Vigilante group, Sumo Karami, Yahaya Jubril and Usman Garba.

The Commissioner in a Press release after the parade made available to Irohinoodua and signed on his behalf by the Police public relations officer PPRO, DSP Abutu Sunday stated that the breakthrough came through Rapid Response Squad (RRS) led by their Commander, CSP. Ogundola Marcus

The Police said “In our relentless and deliberate efforts to rid the State of criminal elements especially kidnappers and the quest to ensure the arrest of the hoodlums behind the killing of two traditional rulers in Ikole-Ekiti and the kidnapping of some school children and their teachers in Emure-Ekiti as well as other kidnapping incidents in the State, the Command Rapid Response Squad (RRS) commenced a thorough investigation and operation and arrested Eight (8) members of a kidnapping syndicate and neutralized one.

According to the police On 8/02/2024 at about 1300hrs, the Command Rapid Response Squad (RRS) received a credible tip-off that a gang of armed men had invaded farmland at Eda-Oniyo-Ekiti and were planning to kidnap some Expatriates in Dairy Farmland, Ikun-Ekiti.

The police said Upon receipt of the information, a team of RRS operatives swung into action and arrested one ABUBAKAR ALIYU a.k.a SMALLIE who was on a mission to spy on the actual location of the Expatriates. After the arrest of Abubakar Aliyu a.k.a SMALLIE, the leader of the kidnapping gang identified as one Sumo Karami sent two (2) vigilante members, one Saliu Ibrahim and one Umaru Saliu, to secure the bail of the arrested gang member from Police custody.

“The two (2) vigilante members were arrested and they led the RRS operatives to Oro-Ago town where one Mohammed Bashiru, the leader of Miyetti Allah vigilante in Oro-Ago, Kwara State, was arrested. During interrogation, Mohammed Bashiru revealed that he is a relative of Sumo Karami who is a leader of a dreaded kidnapping gang and that Abubakar Aliyu a.k.a SMALLIE is one of his gang members who have been terrorizing and kidnapping innocent citizens with AK47 rifles and other dangerous weapons. Initial investigation revealed that Sumo Karami and his gang members were responsible for the kidnapping of the Pupils and their Teachers in Emure-Ekiti on 29th January 2024.”

The police revealed that the phone used to demand ransom for the release of the Pupils and the Teachers was recovered from the suspects.

The police efforts led to the arrest of two (2) gang members, namely: Yahaya Jubril and Usman Garba in Owo forest, Ondo State.

“Further investigation led to the arrest of one Kenneth Ugwu in Ibadan, Oyo State, on 14/02/2024. The suspect, during interrogation, confessed to being a member of a kidnapping syndicate that kidnapped 5 Pupils, three (3) teachers and a driver in Emure-Ekiti who was allegedly killed by the kidnappers.

“The suspect led a team of RRS operatives to the kidnapper’s hideout inside Agric Reserved Forest between Ise-Ekiti/Emure-Ekiti. On sighting the Police, the armed hoodlums engaged the team in a gun duel. In the process, one of the gang members who was later identified as AYUBA was neutralized, and one Abubakar Mohammed a.k.a Smallie was captured alive while other gang members escaped through the forest.

“Investigation revealed that the syndicate was responsible for the kidnapping of one Paul Omotosho, the APC Chairman, Ekiti State, along Agbado/Imesi, Ekiti road on 08/07/2023, the kidnapping of Mr and Mrs Awoniyi along Ikere/Itaogbolu road in the month of January this year and the kidnapping of teachers and pupils of Apostolic Faith Secondary School, Emure-Ekiti on 29th January 2024. ”

The exhibit recovered from the suspects according to the police were”
“One (1) AK 47 assorted rifle,
One(1) pump action gun loaded with five (5) life cartridges,
Twenty-one (21) AK47 live ammunition,
Expended shells of AK-47 ammunition.,
One (1) face-mask,
One (1) Nose mask,
Two (2) pairs of hand gloves,
Twenty (20) different handsets,
One (1) National ID Card bearing Salisu Mohammed,
Two (2) MTN SIM cards and
One (1) airtel sim card”

The CP said “as I have ordered vigorous, constant and sustained bush combing operations as well as raiding of black spots across the State.”

He urged residents to support and cooperate with the Police by supplying timely and credible information that could lead to the arrest of criminal suspects in the State.

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