By Augustine Ehikioya
In the fight against crimes, Police Officials in Enugu State have arrested 26 suspects in connection with cultism, conspiracy, and unlawful possession of firearms/ammunition.
Some of the items recovered from them included 5 firearms and 4 live ammunition.
A Bulletin of the Enugu State Police Command issued on the 1st of June, 2022 by the Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Daniel Ndukwe, and made available to Security Watch Africa (SWA), disclosed that the Commissioner of Police (CP), Abubakar Lawal, has also charged officers and men to be on top of their games.
It said “The Commissioner of Police, Enugu State Command, CP Abubakar Lawal, fdc, has charged Operatives of the Command to remain at the top of their games, in view of actualizing the Command’s quest to purge the State of unrepentant criminal elements.
“His position is sequel to the arrest of twenty-six (26) male suspects, involved in the offences of conspiracy, unlawful possession of firearms/ammunition and cult activities. The arrests led to the recovery of one (1) English-made Berretta pistol with one (1) live round of .9mm calibre ammunition, four (4) locally-made pistols with three (3) live cartridges and other incriminating exhibits.”
Giving details of the operations that led to the arrests and recoveries, the Bulletin said “On 29/05/2022 at about 11pm, a combined team of Police Operatives drawn from Operation Restore Peace (ORP) and Enugu Metro Area Command, while on routine stop/search duty along Abakaliki Road, Enugu, intercepted a commercial bus and arrested one Obinna Owoh aged 22, of Ntezi in Ishielu LGA of Ebonyi State, while two of his cohorts escaped. Search conducted on him led to the recovery of two (2) locally made pistols with three (3) live cartridges.
“Similarly, on 28/05/2022 at about 5.30pm, Police Operatives serving in the Nsukka Sector of the Command’s Crack Squad arrested one Benedict Nwodo aged 29, of Ugwuechara in Nsukka, following their prompt response to a distress call alleging that he was sighted with a gun along CSO Site in Nsukka.
“One (1) English-made Berretta pistol with one (1) live round of .9mm calibre of ammunition was recovered from him.’
The Bulletin added “In a related development, on 28/05/2022 at about 4.30am, Police Operatives serving in Anti-Cultism Squad of the Command, acting on credible information, busted a secret cult meeting/initiation process in a forest at Eke in Udi LGA, arrested twenty-four (24) suspects and recovered two (2) locally made pistols, seven (7) black berets and a white-coloured ten litres can, containing liquid substance suspected to be a mixture of palm wine and Indian hemp used for the initiation.
“Ongoing investigation revealed that the suspects are made up of fourteen (14) newly initiated and ten (10) old members of Apache Tigers (“Two-Two”), which is also known as Black Beret (“BB”) Confraternity.
“The suspects include: Eze Lucky Chinemerem aged 27, Igwe Chidimma Jonathan aged 22, Ugwu Chiemerie aged 22, Agubata Chidera aged 22, Abraham Onumah aged 28, Abdulraham Suleiman aged 21, Chizoba Atu aged 23, Sunday Victor aged 23, Eneh Chidera aged 28, Asadu Ejike Stephen aged 25, Eze Chibuzor Emmanuel aged 22, Ebuo Tochukwu Victor aged 27, Ogbodo Mohammed aged 32 and Gabriel Ebubechukwu aged 23.
“Others are Offia Emeka Emmanuel aged 26, Ajoku Leo Chiemeka aged 28, Onyekwelu Ugochukwu aged 32, Chibuoke Chukwuemeka aged 40, Chineke Chibueze aged 26, Ugwu Chibuike aged 35, Aneke Chidubem aged 30, Ozougwu Henry aged 29, Aneke Ugochukwu aged 31 and Nwali Ikechukwu aged 25. They all confessed to being members of the secret cult group.”
All the suspects, the bulletin said, shall be arraigned in court once investigations are concluded.
It also urged members of the public, particularly residents of the State, to remain law-abiding, vigilant and continue to assist the Police with credible and timely information/intelligence towards clamping down on unrepentant criminal elements in the State.
“This they can do by reporting at the nearest Police Station or by calling the Command’s emergency hotlines on: 08032003702, 08075390883 or 08086671202. Or alternatively send e-mails to: email@example.com or use the “NPF Rescue App” to make such reports, and rest assured that their identities and the reports shall be accorded utmost confidentiality and necessary action,” it stated