BY EMMA UNA
Undercover police operatives with Cross River State Police Command nipped in the bud the plan by heavily armed militants to strike in Calabar, the state capital, during the annual Carnival Festival. The state police commissioner, Mr Kola Sodipo, said two of the suspected militants, Daniel Sunday, 25, and Prophet Friday, 19, were arrested on December 24, 2013 at Ikang, Bakassi with 800 live ammunition, 7.62mm and 634v rounds of general purpose machine gun , GPMG, 56 mm and 632 live assault rifle ammunition.
“Their arrest aborted their plans to unleash havoc in the city during the annual Calabar Festival”.
Sodipo said explosive devices, mounted by another set of suspected militants, Eyo Okokon Nsa and-Peter Ibe, during the period at Atan , at Odukpani in the outskirts of Calabar, could have caused havoc had the police not uncovered the plan and carried out immediate detonation of the devices. “110 pieces of dynamite fuses, nine bags of ammonium nitrate used to prepare the explosive devices were recovered and the suspects arrested and they confessed to the crime”, he said.
During the period, according to the police commissioner, a total of eleven armed robbery suspects were arrested in various parts of the state. The suspects include David Nse Abasi, Colins Okoh and Aka Jerome who blocked Mkpani / Ekori road in the Central Senatorial District and robbed several persons including one David Onovo of N79,000,00. Other suspects include Simon Michael Agba, Samson Kalu, Abosi who allegedly robbed Iheme Tochukwu, the manager of Tolik Filling Station in Ikom of N57,000.
Sodipo said N278,000 was recovered from one robbery suspect, Godwin Samuel, who allegedly robbed Chijoke Samuel of 2 Oti Ansa Street while the police also recovered N350,000 from three other robbery suspects: Edem Basey Effiong, Emmanuel Nkalu and Aliyu Umaru.
“They robbed Imeh Stephen of Basin Authority at gun point of recharge cards valued at N250,000, and cash of N350,000; in their possession was also seven live ammunition, army uniform, recharge cards and handsets”.The police boss said a total of 48 locally made pistols were recovered from criminals while 3,893 arrests were made with 955 prosecutions made in 2013.
“With increased visibility, intensive foot and vehicular patrols, sustained raiding of black spots, and collaboration with residents of the state, the police would not relent in bringing crime to its barest minimum”, he added.He reiterated that training and retraining was being intensified by the Command to sharpen the ability of his men to adopt proactive community measures in carrying out surveillance and community initiatives inoder to comply with directives from the “Police High Command to win the war against crime and terrorism”.