By Evelyn Usman
FOLLOWING a WhatsApp message sent to police authorities by some young men from whom officers took N200,000, three policemen attached to Area ‘N’ Command, Ijede-Ikorodu, Lagos, have been dismissed from the Force.
They reportedly arrested the young men and accused them of being fraudsters, popularly known as ‘yahoo yahoo boys’. The officers then forced the young men to part with N200,000 via ATM withdrawal and mobile bank transfer.
The dismissal of the policemen—Inspector Okelue Nkemeonye, with Force No. 136005; Sergeant Braimoh Sunday, 355897, and Sergeant Yusuf Olukoga—followed an Orderly Room Trial at the Zone 2 Command Headquarters, Onikan.
They were reportedly found guilty by the adjudicating officer on two charges of offence against discipline.
Police WhatsApp number
Explaining the circumstance that led to their dismissal, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit, PCRRU, at the Force Headquarters, Abuja, Abayomi Shogunle, disclosed that a complainant had told the unit via WhatsApp number 0805 700 0003 that he was arrested at gunpoint and money was forcefully collected from him after he was assaulted.
He said that upon receipt of the complaint on June 21, the unit dispatched its team to Ikorodu, where the three policemen, including ASP Bayo Obadia, who led the team, were apprehended.
Shogunle said after investigation, it was found out that the allegations were true.
His words: “Upon the receipt of the complaint, a case with tracking number PCRRU637624 was registered and acknowledgement of complaint sent to the complainant.
“PCRRU investigation team was dispatched to Ikorodu where all the three dismissed policemen, including AP No. 98199 ASP Bayo Obadia, who led the team, were apprehended. PCRRU preliminary investigation revealed that all the allegations contained in the WhatsApp message actually happened.
“Also, the four police officers, who were armed on the day of the incident, falsely paraded themselves as operatives of Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, despite not being posted to SARS.
Change Begins with Me Campaign
“Investigation also showed that the officers extorted N200,000 from the young men, who they tagged ‘Yahoo Yahoo Boys’. The money was forced from them via N90,000 ATM withdrawal and N110,000 mobile bank money transfer to a third party account provided by the policemen.
“All the extorted N200,000 was recovered by the PCRRU investigators.
“The Inspector-General, Ibrahim Idris, has commended the complainant for coming forward to report the incident to PCRRU.
“He also said that all allegations of professional misconduct reported against any police officer would be treated in line with relevant laws and in keeping to the ‘Change Begins with Me Campaign’ of the Federal Government.”