The Nigerian Army officer who gave the order for the killing of three Police officers and a civilian who were transporting a kidnap kingpin, Hamisu Bala Wadume, have been arrested.
Vanguard reports that the officer, a captain, was arrested by the Army on Sunday, August 11, night after he was invited by the panel set up to investigate the incident for questioning. A source within the Army said the kidnap suspect who was freed by some soldiers – along Ibi-Wukari road – who were allegedly compromised.
It was also gathered that the captain ordered the soldiers to shot at the bus conveying Wadume with an instruction that no police officer in the vehicle escapes while the kidnap suspect is freed. “Our colleagues (police operatives) also exchanged pleasantries with the army personnel at the checkpoint before they pursued then on the captain’s instruction and fired at them,” the source said. According to the source, the road to Ibi village is a narrow and only road that leads to the area.
“That was why when the policemen encountered the soldiers at the three checkpoints, they introduced themselves and stated what they came for. They chatted, joked and exchanged pleasantries,” the source said. The source added that the arrest of the suspect was made by the Police within 20 minutes and while they were returning soldiers at the first and second check points inquired from them if they were already through.
The source said the soldiers and operatives know each another, but the phone call from a top military personnel changed the whole scenario. However, another military source said the team of the inspector general of Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) were attacked at the second military check-point in the village causing the driver of the vehicle to loose control under the series of gun fire. The source explained that some of the officers who managed to crawl out of the vehicle into the bush path were immediately shot dead by the soldiers at close range after they realised they were still alive. It was gathered that residents who crowded scene of the incident went wild with jubilation, after been informed that the slain police officers were kidnappers.
However, the teaming crowd saved the lives of two other officers who survived the gunfire by the soldiers. The source said, it was gathered one of the soldiers reportedly told his colleagues that killing the surviving officers would be too risky as the villagers already captured them alive on their smart phones.