Police authorities in Rivers State have fired back at the state governor, Nyesom Wike over his allegation that an aide of the SARS commander in the state, Mr Akin Fakarode has been arrested by the police.
The police describe the governor as a serial liar, insisting that Sergeant Ndubuisi Okoro who was arrested over a questionable relationship with robbery suspects was never an aide to the SARS commander.
In separate interviews, the police image maker, Nnamdi Omoni and the SARS commander himself said Wike was a liar.
In responding to TNN's questions to him on the allegation, Fakarode said “This story is false. None of my orderly(sic) or personal staff was arrested . The true version is that I arrested two SARS officers namely Ndubuisi Okoro and David Abakpa on Sunday for unprofessional conduct of undue familiarity with suspects under investigation.
“This is an outcome of a kidnapping suspect on SARS watch list since October last year. The suspects Chigozie Onuigbo and Ifeanyi Okoye were arrested by SARS at locations in Aba and Umuahia. During investigation, the phone number of two SARS operatives were found in the suspects' contact and this informed my arrest of the SARS men to explain their relationship with the suspects.
“Wike is entitled to his opinion. He lies against everybody . How many lies has he told? Can you count?
The PPRO also corroborated Fakarode's position when he told TNN in a telephone interview that no aide of the SARS commander was arrested.
“In the first place, none of the two persons arrested is an aide to the SARS commander, Akin Fakorede. I can confirm the arrest of the two SARS personnel, one is serving at SARS, Emohua and the one at SARS, Ereme, in Ogba/Egbema Local Government.”
He said even though the SARS Port Harcourt controls all the other units in the state, it cannot be true that any of them is Fakarode's aides. “That is not verifiable. The governor lied against Akin.”
Omini said the police high command was clearly worried by the activities of a few police personnel. “We are doing our best to get rid of them.”
Wike had raiased the alarm on Sunday, on what he called the arrest of the orderly of Rivers State Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS) Commander, Akin Fakorede and another SARs operative for armed robbery and kidnapping.
Speaking during a thanksgiving service in honour of the chairman of Rivers State Local Government Service Commission, Chief Azubuike Nmerukini at St Thomas Anglican Church, Diobu, he had also said that the APC federal government had entered a devious mode where it believes that framing opponents will enhance its political fortunes.
"The federal government has arranged with a Lebanese to say that I told him to buy arms for the purpose of the forthcoming elections.
"I am not close to any Lebanese, let alone give money to anyone to buy arms for elections. We have dutifully served our people and we don't need to purchase arms for elections.
"If elections are held 20,000 times, we will win because our projects have positively impacted the lives of our people ".
The governor stated that the federal government is also planning to sponsor crisis in Rivers State ahead of the 2019 elections, for the state's election to be postponed. He said the target is to use security agencies for rigging purposes.
"They plan to cause so much crisis in the state so that Rivers election is held on a separate date. Their plot will fail. Rivers election will hold same day with that of other states.
On the arrest of the SARS operatives, Wike had alleged that most of the kidnappings and armed robbery in Rivers State are masterminded by SARS operatives under the leadership of Fakorede .
He said that the arrest and detention of the SARS Operatives prove their involvement in criminality against the people of the state.
The governor said that “Okoro, the Police Orderly of the Rivers State Commander of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, Akin Fakorede has been arrested for armed robbery and kidnapping while another member of the Rivers State SARS Commander's team; Sergeant Christopher Abakpa has also been arrested for armed robbery and kidnapping.
Wike declared that he was alerting Nigerians because the police high command could sweep the matter under the carpet.
He alleged that the two SARS Operatives run a kidnap and armed robbery gang of eight persons. According to him, the policemen had confessed to their crime.
He said that the state government was in possession of the statements made by the arrested operatives who kidnapped one Mrs Eva.