President Muhammadu Buhari has said he had no objections to any plan by the Nigerian police to arrest the Senate President Bukola Saraki following a string of murder cases in Kwara State, a report has claimed.
Premium Times quoted multiple sources, who were briefed about the meeting between the president and the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, on Friday afternoon as saying that the president was informed about at least 20 murders allegedly linked to Mr Saraki in his home state.
It is understood that Idris arrived at the State House with a cornucopia of homicide investigation documents relating to Mr Saraki.
With this, the probability of having the senior lawmaker arrested any day from now is high, following the president’s position that the law should run its course insofar as detectives have sufficient facts to file charges.
Already, the police have declared Mr Saraki a person of interest in the deadly robbery incident in Offa, the second-largest settlement in Kwara State.
In a statement on Sunday, police spokesperson, Jimoh Moshood, said at least five of the suspects arrested in the robbery “admitted and confessed to have been sponsored with firearms, money and operational vehicles” by Mr Saraki and Abdulfatah Ahmed, the state governor.
While parading the suspects on Sunday afternoon, Mr Moshood identified one of them as Ayoade Akinnibosun, a 37 years old resident of the state and the ‘overall’ leader of the armed gang. His vehicle was allegedly one of those used in the robbery.
They also admitted and confessed to have been sponsored with firearms, money and operational vehicles by the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki and the Governor of Kwara State, Alh. Abdulfatah Ahmed.https://t.co/Nvfntg0UD0 pic.twitter.com/HGYUgc6lwM
— The Nation Nigeria (@TheNationNews) June 3, 2018
On the invitation of the Saraki, the Force Spokesman, ACP Jimoh Moshood said:
“Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki is being invited to report to the Police to answer allegations indicting him from confessions of Five gang leaders arrested for active participation in Offa Bank Robbery and Killings of 33 innocent persons.
“Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki is being invited by the Nigeria Police Force to report to the Force Intelligence Response Team office at Guzape, Abuja to answer to the allegations levelled against him from the confessions of the five gang leaders.”
On the update into the investigation, Moshood said:
“The investigation into the Offa Bank Robbery and gruesome killings of more than 33 Innocent persons in Offa, Kwara State on the 5th April, 2018 directed by the Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim Idris has made significant progress, successes and more revelations have been recorded.
“The Gang Leaders and some of the principal suspects arrested for their active participation in the robbery and the killing of innocent persons have made confessional statements admitting to the various criminal roles they and their sponsors played in this dastard and heinous crime.
“The Five gang leaders namely; Ayoade Akinnibosun, Ibukunle Ogunleye, Adeola Abraham, Salawudeen Azeez, Niyi Ogundiran and some of the other 17 suspects arrested for direct involvement and active participation in the Offa Bank Robbery and the gruesome killing of 33 innocent persons which includes some pregnant women and nine Police personnel; admitted, confessed and volunteered statements that they were political thugs of the Senate President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Sen. Bukola Saraki and the Executive Governor of Kwara State, Alh. Abdulfatah Ahmed.
“The arrests of the suspects were made possible after the arrest of two principal suspects (Kunle Ogunleye aka Arrow 35yrs and Michael Adikwu an Ex-Convict) whose pictures captured by CCTV in one of the Banks during the Banks robbery were circulated to the media and the public.
“The two principal suspects confessed to be among the suspects led by the five (5) gang leaders to carry out the Offa Banks Robbery, the attack on the Divisional Police Headquarters, Offa and the killings of 33 innocent persons on the 5th of April, 2018.
“During interrogation, the five gang leaders confessed and volunteered statements that they carried out the Bank Robberies, the attack on the Divisional Police Headquarters in Offa and the killings of innocent persons during the robbery of the following six banks.”
Saraki: I’m ready to honour police invitation…
The Senate President has said he will honour the invitation by the Nigerian police because he has “utmost respect for the rule of law.”
“Let it be known that there is no way I could have been associated with armed robbery against my people,” he was quoted as saying in the statement issued by Yusuph Olaniyonu, his spokesman.
“When the Offa robbery incident happened, I was the first top public official to pay a visit to the place and right there in the palace of the traditional ruler, I put a call through to this same Mr. Ibrahim Idris, the IGP, requesting him to make certain specific security arrangements as demanded by the people.”
“Now, it is the Offa bank robbery suspects that are about to be used,” he said, adding: “This plot is concocted to embarrass me and, in the mind of the IGP, it is his own response after his refusal to honour the invitation by the national assembly, headed me, for him to come and offer explanations on the rampant killings and violence across the country.
“Like the earlier one, this frame-up will also fail as I hereby state categorically that I have no link with any band of criminals.
“As a person who has utmost respect for the rule of law and all constitutional institutions, when the invitation from the police is formally extended to me, I will be ready to honour it without any delay.
“It is however sad that this abuse of the criminal investigation process aimed at intimidating and over-overawing the legislature, thereby obstructing it from doing its work, is a big threat to our democracy.”