The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has ordered the deployment of three units of police mobile force, high powered police investigation team and Armoured Personnel Carriers to Kwara.
Force spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday said anti-robbery equipment and 10 crew members were also deployed to the state.
Also, reportedly deployed to Offa is the head of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at the Lagos Police Command, Abba Kyari.
Moshood said three additional PMF units were also deployed to Taraba to prevent further attacks in Donga and Bali local government areas by gunmen.
He said the units which had arrived Kwara would cover Offa and its environs as well as other vulnerable points in the state.
The spokesman added that the police teams would carry out intelligence gathering and raids on identified criminal and other flash points in the states.
He said the team deployed to Kwara, working in synergy with the state criminal intelligence and investigation department had arrested eight suspects connected with the bank robbery.
The force spokesman said the unit deployed to Taraba would cover Donga, Bali, Lau, Gassol, Karim Lamido local government areas and other flash points in the state.
Moshood said the team had also arrested 12 suspects directly responsible for the recent killings in Donga and Bali.
He said items recovered from the suspects included seven AK 47 rifles, four locally made revolver pistols and 30 rounds of AK 47 ammunition.
Others were seven operational vehicles used by the armed robbers and assailants in the two incidents.
Moshood called on the residents of the states to be calm, supportive of the police and promptly report suspicious acts or persons to the nearest police detachment or station for prompt action.
…meet ACP Abba Kyari, nemesis of Evans, Godogodo, others
There is one police officer whose name strikes terror in the hearts of every hardened criminal in the country. He is Abba Kyari, an assistant commissioner of police.
Abba Kyari is the head of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at the Lagos Police Command and was in 2016 promoted Assistant Commissioner of Police to head the Inspector General of Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT).
Make a list of gallant, hardworking, tough cop in the country and Abba-Kyari’s name will come out in shining armour.
His name came up again recently when he led a team of policemen to arrest most wanted billionaire kidnapper popularly known as Evans.
Among the top feats of the gallant police officer are the arrest of hardened criminals who killed with impunity and terrorised innocent members of the public, including policemen.
His impressive high profile missions include nabbing kidnappers and hardened criminals like Evans, Godogodo, China, Nnamdi, Yemi Boss, Abdullahi, Victor, Vampire etc.
All these criminals have all become history now due to the efforts of this gallant police officer and his team.
…FG, Saraki, Ahmed condole victims’ families
Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki on Saturday said it is high time the country scaled up its security infrastructure.
He said it is clear that the present challenges are as a result of the country’s inadequate response to issues of security adding that existing architecture need a radical and serious minded approach by the government.
Speaking in Offa during a condolence visit to the Olofa of Offa, Oba Muftau Gbadamosi Esuwoye on last Thursday’s banks robbery attack, the Senate President said the legislative arm is ready to come up with real design to improve the security situation.
He condoled with the families of both the civilians and the policemen killed during the incident adding that “in a place like Offa that is very vibrant in commerce, we must address security challenge so that people can continue to carry out their normal activities.
He said clamour for military intervention to assist the community has its own fallbacks.
“There is no society that delegates the responsibilities of the police to that of the military. Because italso has its own fallbacks; the number of the military is very thin. They are in most of the states of the federation. This makes it difficult for them to protect the territorial integrity of the country.
“The issue had to do on how to improve on our security infrastructure. It is clear that we are not responding adequately to this. That is why we organised a security summit sometime ago to address the issue and to work closely with the executive in order to find lasting solution to security problems in the country.
“We in the legislative arm are ready to come up with the real design to improve on the security challenges, whether it is the human resources, equipment, or it has to do with funding and legislation. There is also the issue of the actual structure of the police.
“This issue requires a very radical and serious minded approach. Unless we address this, we will continue to have this kind of scenario where a bunch of criminals will hold a town for two hours and carryout this mayhem. There is no society that will really allow this kind of thing to happen.
“The police must see this as an institutional issue. It is not personal. On our part as legislators we are ready to do anything that will empower them,” he stated.
In his remarks, the Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Gbadamosi Esuwoye II, who noted this is the fourth time the community will experience such robbery attack in the last 10 years harped on the need for the establishment of state police.
“It will be better for the Federal Government to establish state police. With that, they will be closer to the people and to the state government.
“One of the major problems of the police force is inadequate manpower. In Offa, the number of policemen is not up to 50. Anytime we have issues like this there will be no reinforcement anywhere. What we need is manpower. The state government can afford to buy us Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC), it can afford to build more police stations but if the manpower is not there, it is not enough.”
He said that the issue is not a question of sophisticated weapons because what the robbers have, the military and the police also have.
On the issue of vigilantes, the Olofa noted that, “We have always been involving local security, but you know these criminals when they come they always catch people unawares. There is risk attached to the use of local hunters, because by the time we get them involved because of a day like this, the police will arrest them and say they are carrying dane guns.”
In a related development, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, on Sunday paid a condolence visit to Governor AbdulFatah Ahmed of Kwara, over the last week’s bank robbery in Offa.
Mohammed in Ilorin also condoled with the families of the victims of the April 5 robbery attack and described it as unfortunate and sad.
He said the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, had assured that perpetrators of robbery attack would be arrested and brought to justice.
The minister recalled that no fewer than 17 lives, including policemen and a pregnant woman were lost during the robbery.
Lai Mohammed gave assurance that all the people involved would be adequately dealt with.
The governor expressed gratitude to the minister for taking time to visit to Kwara to commiserate with the families of the victims and the police community.
Ahmed appealed that more efforts be made by all to further strengthen security in the state in particular and the country at large.
He stressed the need for community policing, synergy among security agencies and adequate logistics to improve security network to nip criminality in the bud in the country.
The governor also said that police Armoured Personnel Carriers in the state would be located in strategic positions to enhance security.
He urged the people of the state not to allow the incident dampen their spirit.
…Speaker, Bolaji Abdullahi, IEDPU express grief
The Speaker of the Kwara State House of Assembly, Hon. Dr. Ali Ahmad has tasked the security agencies in the state to be alive to their responsibilities by providing adequate security to lives and properties of Kwarans.
The call, according to Ahmad became imperative following the dastardly act of armed bandits who unleashed terror on indigenes and residents of Offa on Thursday evening, which led to loss of lives.
This was contained in a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Media, Shuaib AbdulKadir made available to National Pilot describing the gruesome act as unacceptable.
He recalled that in recent years, Offa has been the target of armed robbers, particularly the commercial institutions located in the town, a situation which he noted had subjected the people to live in palpable fear of attacks at anytime.
The Speaker admonished the government to further collaborate with all the security agencies with a view to finding lasting solution to the security challenges in Offa and the state at large.
He pledged that the Assembly would not hesitate to provide the required legislative support to both the Executive and security agencies to make Kwara safer for all and sundry.
Ahmad enjoined the Nigeria Police Force to as a matter of urgency spread its tentacles in order to ensure that the perpetrators are not only apprehended but prosecuted appropriately.
Similarly, the Speaker enjoined the citizens to always provide the needed information to the security outfits, saying that would enhance their operations and further make the state conducive for peace to thrive.
He condoled both the State government, Offa Local Government Council, the Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Gbadamosi Esuwoye over the loss of lives and properties in the attack.
Also, the lawmaker commiserated with the Nigeria Police Force for the loss of its personnel in the unfortunate incident as well as families of people killed by the bandits.
Also, the National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Julius Ogunro, said he was shocked and saddened by the callousness of the armed robbers who targeted security officials and shot indiscriminately at passers-by before attacking banks where undisclosed sums were stolen.
”My thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to the families, associates and friends of the deceased of the unfortunate incident over the terrible loss. I pray that the Almighty God comforts them and grant the dead eternal rest.”
”I urge the security agencies to do everything within their powers to arrest the perpetrators of the heinous acts and bring them to book, as such mindless violence does not belong in Kwara.”
Similarly, the National President of Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union (lEDPU), Amb. Uthman Sheikh-AbdulAzeez, urged the Federal Government to provide security gadgets and surveillance in Kwara to curb cases of bank robbery and other vices in all parts of the state.
He made the call on Sunday at the palace of Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Esuwoye when he led over 30 members of the National Executive Council of the Union to commiserate with the monarch over Thursday’s bank robbery in Offa which claimed many lives.
Sheikh-AbdulAzeez who is retired Security expert noted that the security operatives in the state lacked sophisticated equipment that can adequately cater for any security challenges.
He appealed to the Federal Government to provide more security gadgets to the state with qualified manpower to curb cases of bank robbery and other security problems.
While commiserating with the royal Father over the incident, the IEDPU boss prayed God to put an end to situation in Offa in particular and the state in general.
The President of the Union while presenting condolence letter to the Olofa prayed God to grant the dead eternal rest and give the entire people of Offa the fortitude to bear the loss.
Responding on behalf of the Olofa, the National President of the Offa Descendants Union (ODU), Alhaji Najeem Usman-Yasin thanked the lEDPU for the visit and prayed God to continue to guide and protect the people.
…Ahmed pledges new police station
Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed has promised to build a new police station for Offa at a strategic location within the next 45 days.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to the Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Gbadamosi Esuwoye II at his palace in Offa to commiserate with him and people of the community over Thursday’s robbery attack, the governor said he will do everything within his power to prevent a re-occurrence.
Besides, Ahmed promised to facilitate an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) for the community in order to beef up security in Offa and its environs.
Governor Ahmed said he has secured the assurance of the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Idris Abubakar that the security infrastructure of the town will be rapidly scaled-up.
He said these measures were necessary to forestall incessant attacks on the existing police station each time there was armed robbery attack, assuring that those behind the act will soon be apprehended and brought to justice.
According to him, “those who perpetrated this evil have saddened and inflicted pain on us but they cannot break our spirit. I assure you that those behind this wicked act will soon be apprehended and brought to justice swiftly.
“As always, I stand with you in solidarity and support. I pray for the families of the departed and injured and I salute the valiant police officers who fell on that day. We will do everything within our power to ensure that never again will people of Offa or any part of Kwara State live in fear or experience such tragedy again”.
Earlier, the Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Gbadamosi Esuwoye II, requested government’s assistance to prevail on the commercial banks not to abandon the town due to the incident.