By Jimitota Onoyume & Davies Iheamnachor
PORT HARCOURT—Ifeanyi Dike, the suspected ritualist that escaped from Police custody and was re-arrested in Plateau State, yesterday, narrated how power outage aided his escape.
He, however, pleaded for mercy on the murder of the eight-year-old girl, Chikamso Mezuwuba.
Dike, who spoke in Port Harcourt while he was re-paraded by the Rivers State Police Command, insisted that the Investigative Police Officer, IPO, Johnbosco Okoroeze, nabbed over his (Dike’s) escape was innocent.
Dike killed the eight-year-old Chikamso, removed her vital organs and was on his way to dispose of her remains when he was arrested by a local vigilante group in Okporo community, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state.
The suspected ritualist had escaped from the custody of State Criminal Investigation Department, SCID, but was re-arrested in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State, last week, Thursday.
Dike told newsmen that he took advantage of the darkness in the premises of SCID, when he was asked to go into the cell and escaped, noting that nobody knew when he sneaked out.
Dike said: “At the State Criminal Investigation Department, SCID, after I entered my statement late in the evening of the day of my first parade, my IPO asked me to go inside the cell.
“That was when I had the opportunity to run away. My IPO did not help me escape. I know what I did was wrong, please forgive me and have mercy.”
Dike disclosed that he was re-arrested after his successful disappearance from Port Harcourt, when he got involved in another crime in the place he had escaped to in Plateau State.
He explained that he was faced with starvation after he arrived Plateau State and in an attempt to steal food he was apprehended by residents of the area, who later handed him over to the Police.
According to him, “I escaped to Jos. Having stayed for several days without food and due to the injuries I sustained, I was unable to get food to eat. So due to the hunger, I decided to source for food and that was where I was caught and handed over to the Police.
“When I got to the Police station, at first I was hiding my identity, but on interrogation I got fed up and gave them (Police) my aunty’s phone number.
“As soon as the Police called my aunty, she told them that I was declared wanted by the Rivers State Police command. She also handed my IPO’s phone number to the Police officers and they later confirmed that I am on the wanted list. After I was confirmed, I was detained and returned back to Rivers State on Sunday.”
Police laud journalists
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police in Rivers State, Mr. Ahmed Zaki, has described the re-arrest of Dike as an act of God, noting that providence has brought the suspect back to face justice.
He said: “Today (yesterday), with profound humility, I present to you the most wanted ritual killer, Mr. Ifeanyi Maxwell Dike. His re-arrest was made possible by God Almighty, through your numerous prayers and concerns, following his escape three weeks ago.
“I wish to assure you that justice will not only be done, but be seen to be done in the circumstance to bring the full weight of the law to bear on him and any other person implicated in the cause of further investigations.”
… and IG
Zaki, however, commended the public for the confidence reposed on the Police force, and lauded the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, for his support in ensuring the re-arrest of Dike.
According to him: “Barely two weeks, I spoke to you concerning our determination and resolve to re-arrest Ifeanyi Dike, a 200 level student of University of Port Harcourt, who mindlessly and without the fear of God raped and murdered eight years old Chikamso, whose only sin was her absolute trust on her close relation and uncle.
“Your (media) positive actions in information dissemination, both in the print, electronic and social media, even in faraway places of the world, helped. The consciousness of every Nigerian was awaken in the search for this killer.”