Wike indicts SARS operatives over Rivers kidnappings, robberies


Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, has accused operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in the state of being responsible for most of the kidnapping and armed robberies in the state.

Wike made the accusation while addressing journalists at the State Government House in Port Harcourt.

He said the embattled SARS Commander in the state, Akin Fakorede and his operatives had been indicted by an official police signal.

The governor claimed that the signal indicated that they were responsible for the series of kidnapping and deadly robberies across the state.

Wike maintained that the SARS Commander was planted in Rivers to sabotage the security architecture of the state, and create an atmosphere of fear.

The governor alleged that criminal activities of Fakorede were uncovered by the Inspector General of Police X Squad, Abuja, deployed to the state after the squad busted the attempted kidnap of one Azumana Ifeanyi on September 11, 2017 at the GRA, Port Harcourt.

In the statement from the Government House, the governor claimed that the official Police signal titled: “Police Wireless Message ” and Reference Number DT0: 121030/09/2017 —INGENPOL-X-FHQ ABUJA TO-INGENPOL SEC ABUJA, noted that the squad received a distress call on the kidnap of Mr. Ifeanyi and immediately swung into action.

He said men of the IGP’s X Squad, on responding to the signal, met three SARS operatives robbing, and a gun duel ensued.

Wike alleged that the operatives had taken Ifeanyi to a Fidelity Bank ATM where they compelled him to withdraw N500,000 as ransom.

One of the SARS operatives was killed, while Inspector Justice Nyeche who led the IGP team was injured in the shoot-out.

The statement quoted Wike as saying: “Most of the kidnapping and armed robbery taking place in this state are done by men of SARS. They use exhibit vehicles to operate. As the Chief Security Officer of the state, you complain, but they choose to play politics with crime.

“They fight crime in some states, but they refuse to fight crime in Rivers State. We are done with the elections, but they are using SARS to create insecurity in the state.

“As I speak with you, they will deny. But the SARS operative who was killed was amongst those who raided the Rivers East Senatorial District Collation Centre. This man can be identified in the video as one of those who invaded the collation centre with Fakorede.”

Wike also alleged that the deliberate acts of violence being perpetrated by the Police have been planned as part of the rigging process for 2019.

“I have never seen a country where they politicise crime. It is very obvious that they want to give the impression that Rivers State is unsafe. They want to instil fear preparatory to declaring during the elections that they are so much killing.

“Authorities deliberately trying to destroy a whole state and you want the people to be happy. I will no longer write. Now is the time to take my case to the public, for the whole world to know what is happening,” he said.

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