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Rivers Police arrest suspected cultist, recover weapons, others from hideout

Operatives of Rivers Police Command have seized Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), arms and ammunition from the hideout of suspected cultists in the Diobu area of Port Harcourt, the state capital.

SP Grace Iringe-Koko, the spokesperson of Rivers Police Command revealed this in a statement issued on Tuesday in Port Harcourt said the discovery of the weapons followed the arrest of one Samuel Nwokoma, a member of the notorious Blood Star cult group.

Nwokoma, according to the police spokesperson was arrested by operatives of the command’s C4i Strike Force and local vigilance group.

She added that Nwokoma who led them to where the arms were hidden in Diobu area of Port Harcourt.

“The arrest and seizures mark significant progress in addressing the recent wave of cult-related attacks and killings in Diobu.

“The arrest of Nwokoma, 25, a member of the notorious Blood Star cult group, took place on March 17 around 7 a.m., following credible intelligence.

“Nwokoma has been linked to several cult-related killings within Diobu area of Port Harcourt,” she said.

Iringe-Koko explained that after the arrest, interrogators were able to extract a confession regarding his alleged involvement in two cult-related attacks in the area.

“On March 14 at about 8:30 p.m. the suspect, along with his gang, attacked and fatally shot Ede Sunday, 32, at Nanka street by Lumumba in Diobu.

“Similarly, on March 16, the gang also shot George Johnson, 28, in the chest at Ojoto street by Emenike in the same area.

“Despite receiving immediate medical attention at New Mile One Clinic, Johnson tragically succumbed to his injuries,” she added.

The command spokesperson stated that following his confession, Nwokoma led police operatives to his gang’s hideout at Ogwu Waterside in Diobu.

Upon reaching the hideout, she said the cultists fled through an adjacent river close to the hideout.

“Officers proceeded to search the hideout and recovered three AK-47 rifles, one assault rifle, six AK-47 magazines, one Beretta pistol and 274 rounds of 7.6mm live ammunition.

“Additionally, 105 rounds of 6.55 live ammunition, nine rounds of .9mm ammunition, seven packets of IEDs, one long wire used for detonating explosives and various charms were recovered.

“The recovery of these dangerous weapons and explosives will neutralise an immediate threat to public safety and underscores the command’s dedication to combating violent crimes,” she added.

Iringe-Koko said efforts were underway to apprehend the fleeing suspects and urged residents to provide useful information that could facilitate their arrest. (NAN)

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Lagos clampdown on illegal estate development

The Lagos State Government has clamped down on illegal estate developments around the Epe corridor of the state.

The Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Oluyinka Olumide, said this in a statement on Saturday in Lagos.

He stated that he led a special joint exercise to the axis on Thursday and Friday, based on the directive of the state executive council.

He mentioned some of the areas covered during the exercise to include: Alaro City, Okorisan, Igbodu, Molajoye, Shaala, Ketu, and Epe.

Olumide said notices were also served on estate developments such as Patriot Bay Estate, Smart City Estate, the Legend and Hilton Royal Garden.

Others are Greenland Estate, Legacy City, Isinmi Lagos, Dominion City, Topview Estate, and Ibi Alafia, among others.

He pointed out that erring estate developers were requested to visit relevant authorities to perfect their documents.

According to him, under no circumstances should any developer go ahead to start the development of estates without obtaining layout approval, planning permit, and fencing permit as may be required.

The commissioner added that the requirements were necessary to ensure the attainment of an organised, livable and sustainable built environment.

Olumide explained that layout approval was required for proper arrangement of the estate to give room for appropriate services and infrastructure, while the planning permit addressed the planning requirements on individual plots in the estate.

He urged property up-takers and buyers to be wary of investing in estates without approval, to avoid needless embarrassment from government officials.

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Police detain ADC to Fmr. Kogi Governor, Yahaya Bello

The aide-de-camp (ADC) to former Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello, has been arrested and detained by the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

The Female police officer and others were arrested days after the former governor evaded arrest by EFCC operatives on Wednesday, April 17.

The officers were taken into custody on suspicion of aiding and abetting Bello’s escape from EFCC operatives.

The anti-graft agency had stormed Bello’s house to arrest him over allegations of money laundering and financial misconduct while in office.

The Nigeria Police Force has yet to release an official statement regarding the arrests, but police sources say the officers could face charges related to obstruction of justice or conspiracy to hinder a law enforcement operation.

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Zamfara govt suspends commandant state security outfit over allegations of poor funding

The Zamfara State Government has suspended the Commandant of the local security outfit, Community Protection Guards, CPG, Colonel Rabiu Garba (retd).

This is contained in a statement issued by the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Mallam Abubakar Nakwadahe and made available to newsmen in Gusau, the State capital.

The statement said in part, “This is to inform the general public that, Zamfara State government has suspended Colonel Rabiu Garba as Commandant of the state Community Protection Guards”.

“The suspension takes immediate effect”.

According to DAILY POST no reason for his suspension was given but it was gathered that the suspension may not be unconnected with the radio live program he granted where he accused the state government of poor funding of the Community Protection Guards.

In a radio live program at the Vision FM radio Gusau, Colonel Garba said the state government has failed to give financial support to the Protection Guards.

He lamented that since their inauguration, the state government has not provided them with any takeoff grant.

Garba also said the officials of the protection guards were paid their salary only once since they were appointed four months ago.

He said members of the Community Protection Guards have been suffering from poor funding from the state government, a situation which he said has been crippling their activities in the fight against banditry.

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