By Kingsley Omonobi
Abuja – Barely 24 hours after the Acting Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris accused his predecessor, IGP Solomon Arase (rtd) of moving away 24 Police vehicles including the official IGP Staff Car, which is armoured plated and bullet proof, and the spare staff car, both of which are BMW’s, Vanguard can report authoritatively that both cars were sent to an auto repair shop for total and comprehensive repairs for use of the next IGP.
Vanguard’s investigation showed that the cars were sent to Auto Computers located in the Jabi district of Abuja and that the spare BMW car has been completed and repainted. The spare staff car was said to have been having engine problems for the last five years before the last administration sent it for repairs.
A source at Auto Computer told Vanguard that the spare car was delivered to the Police headquarters on Sunday afternoon after completion of repairs and that officials of the company would visit the Acting IGP to demand for payment of the job done.
For the armoured plated Staff Car, Vanguard was told that because of the high technology embedded in the car, the company will need more time to fix the identified problems of the car as some of the needed parts will be imported.
The source pointed out that nobody approached Auto Computer to ask about the whereabouts of the cars, and that since it was the police that brought them, they (company) just went about their repairs.
When Vanguard sought to find out if the proper procedure of ascertaining location of the cars were followed, it was discovered that the Works Department and the Force Transport Department that would have been approached for explanations were not approached.
Rather, the IGP secretariat comprising of newly posted officers, were said to have written the former IGP demanding the whereabouts of the staff cars and other 22 vehicles, some the former IGP was said to have interpreted as a slight on his person.
Further investigation in other relevant departments regarding the whereabouts of other vehicles showed that the vehicles were intact and that while some were deployed for operations, the Police had records of the location of others.
Recall that when news of the alleged missing 24 vehicles made the rounds on Sunday, the former IGP, responded to questions saying the allegations were the handiwork of mischief makers bent on trying to tarnish his integrity.
He wondered what he would be doing with 24 Police operational vehicles when he was not operating a car mart