BY UMAR YUSUF
Yola – Adamawa State Police Command has confirmed the arrest of three police officers, including an Assistant Superintendent, ASP, and two inspectors for allegedly renting arms and ammunition from the police armoury to robbers, as exclusively reported by Vanguard a fortnight ago.
They were alleged to have stolen different categories of arms and ammunition which they gave to robbers for certain amount of money for every operation they reportedly carried out.
At a briefing, in Yola, state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Adenrele Shinaba, noted that the issue of insecurity in the past two weeks had generated a lot of anxiety between the police and the public.
Shinaba said those arrested in connection with the large-scale stealing of arms and ammunition include a retired armourer, one ASP Abuna Mainasara, from Gombe State as well as Inspectors Daniel Eliphas and Abubakar Hali.
He added that the two serving officers had been dismissed from the force after undergoing orderly room trial, preparatory to being charged to court.
The police chief said, following consistent reports of missing firearms from the police armoury, he ordered an investigation which revealed that the theft was perpetrated by the retired armourer, whom he described as the chief supplier of arms with which armed robbers used for their nefarious activities in Adamawa, Taraba and Gombe states, with one civilian, identified as Stephen Tizhe, as their accomplice in the business.
The arms recovered from the dismissed police officers include AK 47 rifles, 1,200 rounds of live ammunition and one empty magazine with which the rifles were said to have been rented out to the robbers at the rate of N200,000 per operation.
Shinaba, however, denied reports about a certain text message from an officer in the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, which led to the arrest of an ASP and 20 other policemen by a vigilante outfit leader in the state, Alhaji Ali Kwara, saying the rumour was not only false but aimed at tarnishing the image of the police.
He said there was no truth in the speculation, as Kwara had worked closely with the police to reduce robbery in the state.