Witnesses had earlier criticized the police saying they simply abandoned the students to their fate when they got to the scene of lynching. A relation of one of the victims actually accused the police of encouraging the mob to kill the boys. The IGP’s statement sadly seems to confirm the witnesses’ criticism.
Despite the credence his statement might have laid to the claims of the critics, Abubakar maintained that the police immediately launched an investigation leading to the arrest of Alhaji Hassan Welewa, the Traditional Ruler of Omukiri Community, Aluu where the heinous incident took place and eighteen (18) others, some of whom are members of the vigilante group of the community.
“Intelligence report implicated Alhaji Hassan Welewa, as being the person who incited the mob to unleash terror on the victims. Further investigation conducted by the police indicates that four (4) suspects, namely: Felemo Solomon; Cynthia Chinwo; Ozioma Abajuo and Chigozie Samuel Evans have been closely linked to this barbarous act.
“Findings have revealed that the victims had gone to the area where they met their unfortunate death earlier that morning to demand for money allegedly owed to them by Coxson Lelebori Lucky, alias ‘Bright’, who raised a false alarm that the victims were armed robbers. Although, Coxson has gone underground, Detectives are on his trail.
“Investigation is ongoing with efforts being intensified to track down others who are involved in the incident. Those who are found culpable shall be prosecuted.”
According to the IGP, policemen have been massively deployed to the area, including detectives to assist the State Police Command.
“Normalcy has been restored in the area, while the situation in the area, especially in the University and other tertiary institutions are being closely monitored with a view to forestalling any untoward reactions.
“Efforts are being intensified to establish the motive(s) behind this crime, arrest all who may be directly or indirectly connected with the crime and eventually bring all indicted persons to book.
“I wish to use this medium to advice and appeal to Nigerians to see it as their civic obligation in the fight against crime and criminality, to assist security agencies in the discharge of their responsibility. Security is everybody’s responsibility and so, should not be abandoned in the hands of security agencies alone. The maximum cooperation of the public is needed to ensure that Nigeria is safe for all.
“Nigerians are further reminded to avoid taking laws into their hands, as two wrongs can never make a right. More so, it is criminal and against the laws of the land and those that do so will surely be made to face the full wrath of the law.
“In addition, the IGP appeals to citizens who might have information touching on this and other on-going Police investigation not to hesitate in turning over such information to the Nigeria Police Force.
“May I assure Nigerians that the Police Force will do everything legitimate, within its capacity, to ensure that perpetrators of these dastardly acts at Aluu in Rivers State are identified and made to face the law.”