EXCLUSIVE: How Nigerian Police Authorities Collected Money, Freed Suspected Robber Who Shot Me, Damaged My Intestines – Inspector Laments Betrayal By Colleagues

POLICE

December 16, 2023

He said that

He said that the soldier confessed that he bought the mobile phone from one Iliyasu Isa at Ebedebiri community in the Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.

Apolice Inspector, Ekperi Edwin Osuo, attached to the Zonal Intelligence Bureau (ZIB), Zone 16 headquarters, Yenagoa, Bayelsa state, has alleged that the Zone 16 police authorities are protecting a suspect who was arrested for attempting to kill him.

He said the suspect attacked and shot him while he was returning home from work in August 2022.

Inspector Osuo accused an Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP Albert Williams, attached to the Zonal Criminal Investigation Department (ZCID), Zone ’16’ headquarters, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State capital of receiving N200,000 from one Mr. Mike Olomu (a politician) and releasing the suspect on bail rather than charging him to court.

Inspector Osuo further accused the Assistant Inspector General of Zone 16 and the Deputy Commissioner of Police, DCP ‘D’ of protecting the suspect who shot and robbed him.

He said when he complained about releasing the suspect on bail, the senior police officers asked him to find a way to re-arrest the suspect.

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Narrating his ordeal, Inspector Osuo said that on August 21, 2022, at about 5.45 pm, “I was shot on my way home along my street at Akenfa 3, Yenagoa, by suspected assassins after dispossessing me of my Infinix Note 12i Android handset valued at N110,000.

“The assailants abandoned me in a pool of blood and fled to an unknown destination, thinking I was dead. A good Samaritan rushed me to a medical facility where I received medical attention and subsequently underwent a major surgical operation to extract the bullets and repair the damage in my abdomen. The pellets scattered all over my left thigh, back, ribs and abdomen.

According to an X-ray report, the bullets also damaged my intestines, liver and spleen, hence the urgent surgery. After I was discharged from the hospital, I started tracking my stolen handset and it revealed the identity of a serving soldier in possession of my stolen handset, so I reported to both Compol Yenagoa and AIG Zone ’16’ Yenagoa because they were all aware of the incident.

“In fact, it was the AIG Zone ’16’ Yenagoa, Ayim Abraham Egong, now (rtd.), who graciously made the initial deposit for my surgery. I reported to the military authority about this development, and upon satisfactorily giving them details of the soldier with my stolen handset, they quickly mobilised to Elele, Rivers State, arrested the soldier and recovered the said handset.”

He said that the soldier confessed that he bought the mobile phone from one Iliyasu Isa at Ebedebiri community in the Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.

According to Inspector Osuo, the military went to the said community, arrested Iliyasu Isa and took him to Joint Task Force (JTF) headquarters at Igbogene, Yenagoa.

He continued, “On November 6, 2023, after preliminary investigation, the MP, Major Hamza handed over the suspect and the exhibit to the Nigeria Police Force, Zone ’16’ headquarters, Yenagoa for further investigation.

“Sadly, against my wish, my IPO, ASP Albert Williams, attached to the Zonal Criminal Investigation Department (ZCID), Zone ’16’ headquarters, Yenagoa, received N200,000 from one Honorable Mike Olomu (a politician) and released the suspect on bail rather than charge him to court. I was never invited for any interviews.

“After a week, I met my IPO, Albert Williams and asked him what was happening to my case. He said that DCP, OPS and DCP ‘D’ met the AIG, and thereafter the AIG instructed him to release the suspect.

“The IPO further asked me to effort to arrest the fleeing suspects. I met the DCP ‘D’ and reported what the IPO had told me, but the DCP asked me if I was expecting them to consult me before granting bail. I said ‘No, sir,’ but I was expecting an interview or a message on the way forward. Then he asked me to leave his office.

“Several attempts to meet with the AIG were unsuccessful as he is always busy but I explained everything to his personal assistant who promised to brief the AIG. Sadly, I have not heard anything to date.”

Explaining further, Inspector Osuo said on December 13, he went for a medical checkup and was asked to go for an X-ray. He said the report/film showed that nine pellets were still stuck in his body and that he required further surgery.

He lamented, “It is really sad to see that the NPF where I work could not protect my interest as the victim in a case of armed robbery/attempted murder; instead, they are all protecting the interest of the suspect. Nobody is concerned about my welfare/health, perhaps because I don’t have money to lavish around.

“I am using this medium to solicit your assistance to inform anybody who could help unmask the perpetrators and get justice. An injury to one is an injury to all. In the spirit of “esprit de corps”… justice delayed is justice denied. The IPO is even angry with me now for demanding that the suspect should be charged and arraigned in court.”

When contacted, the Public Relations Officer of Zone 16 Police headquarters, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, Ikwo Kevin Lafieghe, said that ASP Albert Williams claimed that the N200,000 he collected for the release of the arrested suspect was given by the suspect’s friend as mobilisation for  traveling to Delta State to track the person who sold Inspector Osuo’s phone to the released suspect.

The police spokesperson further said that upon her inquiries, she was informed that the arrested suspect was cooperating with the police on their investigations but was released on health grounds and ordered to be reporting at the police headquarters on a regular basis.

The PRO said, “I have served under seven AIGs since the zone was created and all the AIGs operate an open door policy. There is nobody that wants to see the AIG – officers, civilians and the likes that doesn’t have access to the AIG.

“The present AIG was not the one around when the incident happened. There was never a time he tried to see the AIG and they blocked him.

“Even as a PRO, I spoke with him (Inspector Osuo) today and asked him, if an incident like occurred, did you ever come to me to complain about what you have observed. I would personally swing into action and draw the attention of the AIG if at all they prevented him from seeing the AIG. He was just apologising.

“Concerning the N200,000 allegedly collected for the release of the suspect, the IPO said there was nothing like that. That the money was given for mobilization because when his (Inspector Osuo) phone was tracked to an Army personnel who claimed he bought the phone from one Iliyasu,  Iliyasu was picked up, Iliyasu claimed he also bought the phone from one man that stays in Delta State.

“They had to carry the investigation activities to Delta and the team hired a vehicle that could take take them to Delta. They needed to track the person. The money according to the IPO was for movement of team of investigators to Delta and not for bail.

“On the person that was arrested, he was arrested and he cooperated with the police but his health failed and the Deputy Commissioner in charge of investigation felt that since he was sick, he needed to release him on health grounds and asked that he report regularly to the station

station while they make efforts on how to get to the man in Delta who has fled to Lagos.”

When asked who exactly gave the N200,000 for mobilization as claimed by the IPO, the PRO said, “He (IPO) said the money was given by one Mr. John Akwakwa, a friend to the suspect that was arrested – Iliyasu, to help the police in moving to Delta.”

On whether the released suspect, Iliyasu, has been reporting regularly to the station as ordered, the police spokesperson said, “I went to the DC and he told me that he has been reporting.

“It is not as if the case has been swept under the carpet, no. He is one of us. We empathize with him. When it happened, the then AIG led the management team to the hospital where he was supported with money for his surgery and other things.

“Maybe there was a mix up or misunderstanding somewhere which I don’t really get but as I speak, a complaint has been made and the case will be looked into. It will not be swept under the carpet. I assure you that we will look into it and do the needful.

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