The police on Tuesday paraded persons accused of supplying arms to armed persons who have been attacking communities in Benue and Taraba states.
Scores of people have been killed in both states since the start of the year.
In a statement on Tuesday evening, police spokesperson, Jimoh Moshood, listed the names of the suspects and arms recovered from them.
Read Mr Moshood’s full statement below.
Police Parade Major Gunrunners in Benue-Taraba Axis
The renewed strategies adopted by the Nigeria Police Force to stop the incessant killings of innocent Nigerians and curtail the proliferation of firearms across the country, most especially in the North-Central States have been yielding positive results. The IGP Intelligence Response Team and the Police Special Forces mandated by the IGP to work with Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba State Commands, in the last two weeks arrested the Eleven (11) suspects mentioned above within Benue and Taraba States and recovered from them were Ten (10) AK47 Rifles and other assorted firearms and ammunition.
2. In the first two cases, the suspects confessed to have been responsible for the supply of AK47 rifles and other firearms and ammunition to armed bandits, militias, and criminal herdsmen/farmers in Benue and Taraba States.
3. The first suspect, Morris Ashwe 36yrs Native of Mbajima Village Katsina Ala LGA Benue State confessed and admitted to have been supplying firearms and ammunition to the notorious and most wanted vicious and notorious gang leader of militia, murderers and kidnappers Terwase Akwaza aka Ghana who was declared wanted by the Nigeria Police Force for the merciless killings of several innocent persons and wanton destruction of properties worth Millions of Naira, at ZakiBiam in Benue State on 20th March, 2017 and for other violent crimes such as Culpable Homicide, Mischief by Fire and Criminal Conspiracy and the killing of Mr. Deneen Igbana (late) the Special Adviser on Security to the Governor of Benue State.
4. In the second case, all the three (3) suspects namely Kabiru Idris, Miracle Emmanuel and Husseini Safiyanu were arrested in Taraba State and in their possession Five (5) AK47 rifles, Thirteen (13) AK47 Magazines, Eighty Three (83) Rounds of AK47 Ammunition were recovered. They confessed to have been supplying AK47 rifles and other firearms and ammunition to Militia groups, armed bandits and other criminals in Taraba and Benue States who they admitted have been attacking and killing innocent people in villages in Taraba and Benue States.
5. The third case involving Seven (7) suspected kidnappers. These suspected kidnappers were arrested in the act of movement to kidnap a prominent person in Makurdi Benue State. The arrest was made possible from intelligence gathered by the IGP Intelligence Response Team. Two (2) Beretta Pistols were recovered from them. They confessed to have been responsible for several kidnappings in Benue, Taraba and Some part of Nasarawa State in the recent past.
6. Investigation is being strengthened to arrest other suspects at large. All suspects will be arraigned in court on completion of investigation.
7. The deployment of additional fifteen (15) Police mobile Force units to augment the strength of the Benue State Police Command has beefed-up security in the State and help in sustaining the peace that have been restored to the state.
8. The Force hereby wishes to assure the people of Benue and other contiguous state of its commitment to sustain the peaces that have been restored in those states.
1st Case: ILLEGAL FIREARMS DEALERS
i. Morris Ashwe 36yrs Native of Mbajima Village Katsina Ala LGA Benue State (Working for Terwase Akwaza aka Ghana)
Recovered from him were
i. Five (5) AK47 Rifles,
ii. Two Hundred and Thirty Eight (238) Rounds of AK47 Ammunition
iii. Forty (40) Smoke Grenade Canisters
iv. Seventy Nine (79) LAR Rifle Ammunition
2nd Case: ILLEGAL FIREARMS DEALERS
i. Kabiru Idris 43yrs – Principal Suspect – Arrested in Takum Town, Taraba State
ii. Miracle Emmanuel – Principal Suspect and Gang Leader 27yrs Native of Anambra State
iii. Husseini Safiyanu Native of Taraba State – Principal Suspect
Recovered from them were
i. Five (5) AK47 Rifles
ii. Thirteen (13) AK47 Magazines
iii. Eighty Three (83) Rounds of AK47 Ammunition
3rd Case – KIDNAPPERS/ARMED ROBBERS
i. Emmanuel Ushehemba Kwembe 28yrs Native of Ushongo LGA Benue state,
ii. Sekad Uver 28yrs Native of Koshisha LGA Benue State,
iii. Ordure Fada 22yrs Native of Kwande LGA Benue State,
iv. Stephen Jirgba 18yrs Native of Vande kya LGA Benue State
v. Peter Lorham 24yrs Native of Kinshisha LGA Benue State
vi. Achir Gabriel 30yrs Native of Ushongo LGA Benue State,
vii. Lorhemen Akwambe 35yrs Native of Guma LGA Benue State.
i. Two (2) Beretta Pistols