SSS, soldiers re-arrest, parade Kabiru Sokoto
…Keeps mum on his escape from custody
…His protector couldn’t give him in for N50m
From UBONG UKPONG and MURPHY GANAGANA, Abuja
Saturday February 11, 2012
The State Security Service (SSS) in concert with soldiers yesterday, re-arrested and paraded the suspected Boko Haram member, Kabiru Abubakar Dikko, alias Kabiru Sokoto, the alleged mastermind in the Christmas Day, 2011 bombing of the Saint Theresa’s Catholic Church in Madalla, Niger State.
Kabiru Sokoto, born on May 9, 1983, was first arrested by the police in the middle of January, but escaped from lawful custody on January 15 at Abaji, a suburb of Abuja, under very questionable circumstances, leading to so much anxiety within the nation’s security circle and the country at large.
Consequent upon his escape, the Commissioner of police (CP), Zakari Biu, who was said to have sent a team of few policemen in a Toyota Hilux, to conduct a search in Kabiru’s residence during which he escaped, was suspended from service while the erstwhile Inspector General of Police (IGP) Hafiz Ringim was compulsorily retired from office after being queried by the Presidency.
Few days after his escape, the police had declared Kabiru wanted and placed a N50million ransom on his head for whoever could produce him, but it appeared that the moves were insufficient to have smoked him out from his hiding.
However, since Kabiru could not run for too long, Soldiers and personnel of the State Security Service, who had been on his trail, were able to actually re-arrest him on February 10, at about 0430 hours.
Addressing security correspondents in Abuja, the Deputy Director Public Relations of the Service, Marilyn Ogar, who said that Kabiru Sokoto was presented hot to the press to avoid speculations, however kept mum on how he escaped from custody, claiming that they had no opportunity of interrogating him before his parade.
Ogar, who told journalists that the re-arrest was a joint effort of the military and the SSS, said that he was rearrested at Mutum-Biu in Gassol Local Government Area of Taraba State.
“Kabir Sokoto, who has been linked with the Christmas Day bombings at Madalla, Suleja, Niger State, was picked up from where he was hiding in a clothes-rack, at the residence of an accomplice. On his escape, he had taken refuge at Umaisha in Toto Local Government Area (LGA) of Nasarawa State before he fled to Taraba State where he was eventually rearrested,” she said.
In view of this, the SSS disclosed that the accomplices, who could not give Kabiru up in spite of the whopping N50million ransom, were also arrested with him, but were not paraded.
Umar had escaped on January 14, barely two days after being picked up at the Borno State Governor’s lodge in Abuja, following an intensive surveillance on him for six months by 66 police detectives drawn from the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID), the Counter Terrorism Unit and Criminal Investigation Bureau.
It was learnt that majority of the officers involved in monitoring his movement for almost six months before his arrest in Abuja, were about 45 Assistant Superintendents of police (ASPs) who were trained on tracking devices and counter-terrorism operations in Israel, shortly after the bombing of the police force headquarters on June 16, last year.
It was also gathered that an analysis of his mobile phone recovered by police detectives after his arrest, had revealed stunning recorded conversations with frontline members of the Boko Haram sect as well as some prominent members of the society.
Among such recordings in the phone, according to highly dependable sources, was his conversation with the suicide bomber who struck at the Louis Edet House police headquarters in Abuja, a few moments before the attack.
“It was embarrassing and painful that Kabir Sokoto escaped from custody after his arrest which took time and concerted efforts to actualize. It is true that his phone had been recovered, and I can tell you that the recordings therein are stunning. There are so many highly placed individuals, mostly politicians, involved. And from all indications, the suspect was deeply involved in most of the bombings. In fact, he was the co-coordinator.
“The suicide bomber who attacked the force headquarters in Abuja made a last minute phone call within the radius of the Federal Secretariat in Abuja on the day of the incident. And that call from the bomber was placed to Kabiru. And there are several of such calls and recordings in his phone linked to influential politicians and top government officials”, a security source who pleaded anonymity, confided in our correspondent.
Kabiru, is said to have been born to the family of Umaru Jabbi of Gagi village, Sokoto south LGA of Sokoto State. Upon the death of his father, he was adopted by his paternal uncle, Abubakar Dikko and renamed after him.
He was said to have completed his primary education at Model Primary School, Gagi town in 1996. Although he enrolled for Secondary education at the Ahmadu Bello Academy in 1996, he absconded shortly after and reapplied for admission as a fresh Junior Secondary School (JSS) one student in Sultan Bello Secondary School, Sokoto South LGA, from where he eventually graduated in 2003.
In 2005, he was said to have gained admission into the College of Nursing and Midwifery, Sokoto. At the school, Kabiru was alleged to have exhibited high level truancy and extremist tendencies, a situation which accounted for his poor academic performance.
In mid-2007, he was said to have absconded again from the institution when he refused to re-sit some papers he failed in examination.
He was said to have been instrumental to the visit of the late National leader of the Boko Haram Sect, Mohammed Yusuf, to Gagi village in February, 2009, during which he was declared leader of the Sect in Sokoto State.
Assuring that the security agencies were poised to bring to an end the activities of a few unscrupulous elements, Ogar said that investigation on Kabir Sokoto was still ongoing, adding that as soon as it was completed, he would be charged appropriately to court.
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