By Online Ediitor
THE Imo State Police Commissioner, Mr. Austin Evbakhavbokun, on Friday, paraded the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, Okechukwu Okorocha, a lawyer, for allegedly possession of six automatic prohibited Pump Action riffle and 24 live cartridges.
Also, five others who were in possession of three automatic riffles and 14 live catridges were also paraded. The total live cartridges were 38.
Parading the suspects on behalf of the CP, the command’s Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr. Andrew Enwerem, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said the police swooped on them based on the information received, adding that they were allegedly planning to deploy the arms in other to disrupt the elections.Enwerem said: “They are in the police custody. They will be prosecuted after investigation. These were done to ensure free and fair election. They are being interrogated for illegally being in possession of prohibited firearms.
He mentioned the names of others arrested as Kelechi Onwu, Chijioke Uzonwu, Osita Obiako and Alle Linus. “It is believed that they (guns and cartridges) were going to be used in the election”
Reacting to the arrest, the Senior Special Assistant (SSA), Media, to the Governor, Sam Onwuemeodo, wondered why the police arrested and paraded the governor’s aide on security, accusing the police of politically motivated action.
Onwuemeodo told The Guardian shortly after the parading of the suspects in the following words: “Why must they be paraded today, a day before election. The problem is they want to embarrass government. It is politically motivated.”
But the key suspect, Okorocha told journalists that he had adhered to the instructions of the police to return arms and ammunitions by returning the ones used by the men of the state security network and registered in the police accordingly, adding that he did not know that the ones returned to his house by his security agents were not reported to him for onward submission to the police before the police officers swooped on his house.
Okorocha said the security outfit had been working hard with the police in stamping out kidnappers in the state.
Answering other questions on the election, the PPRO said the police in the state will provide security for the polls in the 3,0525 polling stations spread across 305 electoral wards in the 27 local councils of the state, adding that they would work in tadem with other security agencies.
He stated that the command had received logistics from the police high command, stressing that they would close in on the flash and high point flash volatile areas, such as Ohaji /Egbema Local Council in the state, stating that the restriction of vehicular and human movement between 8 a.m and 5 p.m
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