…hijacks, diverts two containers as “presidential policing Marshals”
By: Okosun Dennis
The knack for impersonation has been taken to a higher pedestal as Lagos State Police Command on Monday paraded some suspects for impersonation and who claimed to be “Presidential Policing Marshals” attached to the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA).
Hidding under the guise of Importers Association of Nigeria (IMAN) Special Taskforce, claimed to be part of “anti-corruption campaign on multiple taxation and other crimes” and thereby hijacked two containers and diverted them at Apapa, knowing full well they lack the legal instrument to enforce such law in the country.
According to the Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu while briefing newsmen on his achievements and breakthroughs in his office at the Command Headquarters in Ikeja, explained that the case of the suspects was “a case of impersonation, Stealing and conduct likely to cause breach of peace which was initially reported at Area ’B’ Command Headquarters and was subsequently transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department, Yaba, for discreet investigation.
It was learnt that on the 1st February, 2021, about 1100hrs the suspects identified as Chijoke Okoro; Chijoke Joseph; Gideon Ijachi; Daniel Abraham; Nsika Eket; Stanley Akparakwu; Augustine Dosu; Solomon Emeka and Benjamin Steve; all male were arrested for hijacking and diverting two containers loaded with goods, claiming they got an instruction to confiscate them claiming that they were from the office of National Security Adviser (ONSA).
CP Odumosu further explained that police investigation revealed that the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) debunked the claims, explaining that “they didn’t know the suspects neither had any relationship with them.”
Meanwhile, the two containers and one branded Toyota Hilux with Reg. No KRD 990 AP with the inscription of “PRESIDENTIAL POLICING MARSHALS, IMAN SPECIAL
TASKFORCE” have been recovered from the suspects.
Speaking with our correspondent, Mr Steve Benjamin who claimed to be a member of Importers Association of Nigeria (IMAN) denied having knowledge of the genesis of “Presidential Policing Marshals” which was inscripted on their operational vehicle.
He explained that all the suspects arrested were “victims of circumstances,” observing that they were called out to go for an operation but were arrested in the process.
“As a senior member of IMAN, I was invited to come and explain their modus operandi at the police station only to be arrested and detained. He added that on the 9th February, 2021, they were arraigned in court and were granted bail but unfortunately, the police refused to release them till date they were paraded.
“We have a signal from the office of the Inspector General of Police’s office and the Area B Commander was aware of our operation and do deploy policemen to work with us. We are duly registered body to operate. If there are other infractions, I don’t know anything about it.
“The IMAN management under Hon. Okoro is in a better position to explain how they came about the “Presidential Policing Marshals,” he concluded.
CP Odumosu reiterated that police investigators have contacted the owners of the two containers, adding that they have, inconjunction with other security agencies checked the content of the goods and were found not to contain any contraband goods.
He further added that the two containers would be handed over to the owners as soon as investigations were concluded.