Enugu: Nimbo Attackers Are Nigerians, Not Foreigners | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe

Latest News

Enugu: Nimbo Attackers Are Nigerians, Not Foreigners

Posted: May 26, 2016 at 5:03 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Nicholas Uwerunonye

Contrary to claims by police authorities and the federal government that the ?recent wave of herdsmen attack of isolated communities across the country were carried out by foreigners, identities of the five suspects involved in the Nimbo attack, an Enugu Community, confirm speculations that Nigerians were actually behind the attacks.

According to dependable police sources, the recently arrested suspects by the police are Nigerians going by preliminary interrogation by a crack team of interrogators of the Nigerian Police. A source high up in the police hierarchy told INDEPENDENT that two of the suspects are from Sokoto State, another from Zamfara, while a forth is from Kogi State.

“This is what the suspect told their interrogators at the initial questioning”, the source told the newspaper, explaining that more interrogations would still to follow to determine the veracity of the claims. The paper could however not establish the state of origin of the fifth suspect as it was learnt that he was proving a hard nut to crack by the police team.

The police have consistently denied that Nigerian herdsmen of Fulani extraction are behind the communal attacks. After the Nimbo massacre, Solomon Arase, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), told the public that the attackers were not Nigerians but from foreign ?countries.

President Mohammadu Buhari, while on one of his trips abroad, echoed similar sentiments. The identity of the five suspects in the Nimbo attack may well put a lie to these claims.

Officially, police are evasive about this disclosure. Several calls to Olabisi Kolawole, assistant Commissioner of police, ACP, and Force Public Relations Officer (FPPRO) were not forth coming. After a text message was sent to her detailing the newspapers findings, Kolawole replied with a query asking to know the full detail of our correspondent. Despite being supplied with the information requested, Kolawole, as at press time neither confirmed nor denied the report.

Another police source, however, explained to the paper that the Police, as a responsible organisation, are careful not to release information that may unnecessarily create ethnic tensions. “Saying that one group of people from one region is behind attack on another group of people in another region is not a responsible thing to say. What the police have tried to do is to balance things so that we do not have? reprisal attacks on our hands,” the police source added.

In April, militiamen believed to be Fulani herdsmen attacked Nimbo, a community in Enugu, laying the place to waste; not less than 50 people were reportedly killed by official estimation. These killings included men, women and children. Though smaller in scale compared to earlier killings of Agatu in Benue State and Nasarawa, the attack provoked national outrage.

President Mohammadu Buhari, perhaps for the first time, came down hard on the perpetrators of the mayhem, ordering security agencies to go ?after the killers. Fulani herdsmen killings have become a cause for grave concern after it provoked agitations amongst ethnic groups affected.

?Threats of reprisal attack have been high.  Only this week, Ayodele Fayose, Ekiti State governor, banned grazing of cattle in his state. According to him, those willing? to do cattle business in Ekiti should start off a ranch.

But Police, in its renewed determination to get to the bottom of the killings launched a nationwide offensive to rout the militiamen behind the communal killings. On Wednesday, the police claimed to have arrested five of the suspects involved in the midnight raid on Nimbo community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State on 25/04/2016. Operatives of the IGP’s Intelligence Response Team (IRT) based on credible technical intelligence swooped on the suspects.

In a news release signed by Kolawole, a copy of which was obtained by INDEPENDENT, the IGP’s IRT, based on the intelligence gathered on the attack, arrested the following people: Mohammed Zurai, Ciroma Musa, Sale Adamu, Suleiman Laute and Haruna Laute, and recovered one Gionee L88 mobile phone with memory card containing the video recording of the massacre in the community. Arase expressed satisfaction at the high sense of patriotism and professionalism with which the members of the IGP’s IRT have carried out their duties.