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Kidnappers Who Once Terrorised Lagos Schools Behind AVM Smith’s Abduction– Police Sources

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There are signs that kidnappers who terrorized schools in Epe and Ikorodu areas about five years ago have resumed their criminal escapades in the riverine areas of the state as police sources linked the abduction of a retired Air Vice Marshal, Sikiru Smith, to the gang.

According to sources who confided confided in a Punch correspondent on Saturday, said that the abductors lurked around the creeks in Ikorodu and Ajah axis before they eventually released Smith early Saturday.

They also said an undisclosed amount was paid as ransom.

Smith, the Chairman of Double Wealth Ventures Limited – a dredging and engineering firm – was supervising work on a site in Ajah on Monday when masked gunmen invaded the place and shot into the air to scare people away.

The gunmen were said to have whisked him away in a waiting speedboat and headed towards Ikorodu.

A team drawn from different tactical squads and coordinated by the state Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, was set up to rescue the retired AVM, who is a cousin to a former Inspector-General of Police and current Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Musiliu Smith.

A source privy to the rescue operation confided in our correspondent that the former Air Force boss was freed at a spot in Ajah in the early hours of Saturday.

The source said, “They (the kidnappers) had been taking him between Ajah and Ikorodu all this while. The police were monitoring their movement but were being careful not to take any action that will put the man’s life at risk. He was eventually released around Ajah.

“A ransom was paid but I didn’t know the amount. In any case police were not party to ransom payment. The kidnappers are known; they were the ones who kidnapped children in schools in Ikorodu and Epe some five years ago before the issue was addressed. The police will go after them.”

Another reliable source at the state police command told Sunday PUNCH that Smith’s abduction was a resurgence by a kidnap gang that once carried out abductions in the Lagos schools. The officer, however, said a manhunt had been launched for the gang.

“The police combed the Ikorodu area based on intelligence. We know those behind the kidnap and we are going after them. It is the same set of criminals who invaded secondary schools in Ikorodu and Epe some years back. The retired Air Vice Mashal was eventually released early today (Saturday) around Ajah,” the source explained.

“According to other sources, the involvement of local vigilantes and youths led to the rescue of the retired senior officer at an enclave in Lufape where four of the suspected kidnappers were arrested and AK47 rifles with loaded magazines recovered from them” The Nation has said

A video shared on Facebook showed the faces of the suspects handcuffed in a vehicle as the rescue party asked them their names. It also displayed the two AK47 rifles and magazines recovered from them.

Confirming his release to Newsmen on Saturday morning, Commissioner of Police (CP) Hakeem Odumosu said Smith had been reunited with his family.

He said efforts were still on to apprehend the kidnappers, adding that operatives had been on the trail of the culprits but were more concerned about Smith’s safe return.

“There are certain information I cannot give you but I am confirming that he has been rescued and reunited with his family.

“The operation started around 2am. He was eventually dropped at Langbasa waterside around 4am with some other persons.

“We will ensure the perpetrators are all rounded up,” Odumosu said.

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EndSARS: CNN, Amnesty International Must Apologise To FG -Lai Mohammed

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The Federal Government has demanded an apology from Amnesty International, CNN and DJ Switch for misleading the world that there was a massacre at the Lekki Toll Gate on Oct. 20, 2020.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed made this demand on the occasion of the first year anniversary of the famous #EndSARS protests in Nigeria.

According to the Minister who spoke during a press conference in Abuja on Wednesday, CNN, Amnesty, and DJ Switch are all guilty of spreading fake news.

Mohammed maintained that there was no massacre of Nigerian youths at the Lekki Toll Gate incident during the protest last year and the trio mentioned only gave false and misleading reports.

The Minister insisted a professional analysis of what transpired at the Lekki Toll Gate revealed that the military didn’t massacre anyone while if truly there was any killing as widely reported, the families of the victims and those affected would have appeared with evidence before the Judicial Panel of Inquiry.

Not done, Lai Mohammed further accused the trio of spreading ‘tales by moonlight’ about what he described as the phantom killings at the Lekki Toll Gate during the EndSARS protests last year.

He said: “…During the sitting, CNN was summoned but it never showed up, thus missing a great opportunity to prove its allegation of massacre at the toll gate. Also, Amnesty International had a golden opportunity to convince the world, but it rather opted for issuing meaningless press releases.”

“In its latest attempt to grasp at straws and redeem whatever is left of its battered credibility on this issue, CNN has continued with its baseless report that soldiers shot at protesters. In a report currently running on the network, CNN brazenly and unashamedly held on to its flawed narrative, relying on an unidentified mother whose son was reportedly shot dead at Lekki, but without convincing evidence of who shot him dead. The same CNN that tweeted on Oct. 23rd 2020 that 38 people were shot dead at Lekki is now struggling to convince the world that one boy was killed at Lekki. What a shame!”

“The testimony of ballistic experts before the Judicial Panel of Inquiry in Lagos contradicts the tales by the moonlight by Amnesty International, CNN, a runaway DJ, and their ilk.”

 

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BREAKING: Police Arrest #EndSARSMemorial Protesters At Lekki Tollgate

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Operatives of the Lagos State Police Command have arrested two protesters at the Lekki tollgate where the #EndSARS Memorial Protest is scheduled to hold in the state today.

One of those arrested claimed to be a journalist while the other was seen carrying a placard.

The police had reportedly warned that anyone seen at the tollgate without an ID card will be arrested.

The arrested journalist told newsmen that he works with LegitTV and that his phone, driver’s license and other documents were taken away from him.

Speaking from a Lagos State Task Force van where he was kept by the police, the journalist who identified himself as Abisola stated that he lost his ID card in transit.

About 30 police trucks and armed personnel are currently at the tollgate to enforce a ban on protests issued by the police command.

A car procession in honour of those believed to have lost their lives at the tollgate when soldiers dispersed #EndSARS protesters on October 20, 2020, is scheduled to hold at the tollgate today.

What #EndSARS protests were about

The #EndSARS protests which were held in October 2020 were against the activities of the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad, a unit of the Nigeria Police Force which was accused of police brutality.

The epicentre of the protests was the Lekki tollgate in Lagos where many youths gathered day and night to air their grievances against police brutality and bad governance.

They were dispersed from the location by gun-wielding soldiers on October 20, 2020, an action which some quarters believe led to the loss of lives.

This was followed by the destruction of private and public properties by hoodlums in Lagos, an incident that informed the latest warning issued by the police in the state.

PUNCH

 

 

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Police Threaten To Punish Inspector For Voting At APC Congress

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The Zone 1 Command of the Nigeria Police Force, Kano, on Tuesday said its attention had been drawn to a trending picture on the social media, of a police inspector casting his vote at the Kano State congress of the All Progressives Congress alongside his principal, the state party chairman, Alhaji Abdullahi Abbas.

A statement by the Zonal Public Relations Officer, DSP Abubakar Ambursa, added that the inspector had been identified as Bashir Mohammed of the Special Protection Unit, Base 1, Kano.

According to the statement, the Inspector is attached to the Government House, Kano, from where he was deployed to work with Abbas as a security aide.

“In view of this seemingly unprofessional conduct of the inspector, the AIG (Assistant Inspector General of Police) has referred the matter to the Zonal X-Squad for investigation.

“If the inspector is found to have committed the offence, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken against him,” the statement said.

The police assured members of the public that further development on the matter would be communicated.

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