Attempts by police authorities in Taraba state to allegedly release some arrested kidnappers on bail has spark new fears among residents of Jalingo who are breathing a sigh of relief from frequent cases of kidnapping in the metropolis.
Police officials in Taraba State had between October 21 and 30th arrested eight members of a kidnapping gang in various locations across the state known to be responsible for various kidnapping incidents in Jalingo.
Also an Islamic cleric who offered prayers for the kidnappers and keep their guns was arrested in Abbare who was arrested and currently detained by the IRT team in Jalingo.
Many residents aware of the arrest of the kidnappers said kidnapping activities has drastically reduced in Jalingo since the gang of kidnappers were arrested but worried over their planned release on bail by the police authority.
Taraba Truth and Facts gathered that leadership of Miyetti Allah, a top police officer from Taraba state and a second class traditional ruler in Gassol Local Government related to a member of the kidnap gang, are mounting pressure on the Taraba State Police command to release the kidnappers on bail and the case be swept under the carpet.
They also prevailed on the police not to parade the kidnappers before the media and public while frustrating police investigation into the kidnappers’ activities.
Several sources said the kidnappers confessed to the police of being behind major kidnapping activities in Taraba state.
“We have video of this gang where they confessed to kidnapping a Custom Officer in Jalingo and collected ransom, they killed a policeman and went away with his gun; they did the kidnapping of one Hassan, a former manager of Total Filling Station in Jalingo, they were the same people that kidnapped a business woman who deals with Keke Napep and shot her at her leg; the kidnap one Abu Yerima in Angwan Gadi and collected N8.5million as ransom; they have confessed to many kidnapping activities in Jalingo, these criminals are with the IRT in Jalingo but there’s a leakage that they want to release them on bail and this has send a lot of fears on the people.”
Worried why the Police Authority in Taraba State refused to parade the criminals to the public, a concern resident warned that any attempt by police to release the criminals on bail would bring back Jalingo under the terror of kidnapping.
“We are worried because the police is under pressure to release the kidnappers on bail, they even refused to parade them before the media and the public just because they are connected to a traditional ruler in the state and a top police officer from Taraba, we are watching the development, IRT are in custody of these people but the progress of this investigation is nothing to write home about, they have already confessed to be behind these kidnappings but they want to release them on bail because of high profile people are mounting pressures on killing the case, since the arrest of the gang we have not heard about kidnapping in Jalingo, for more than three weeks now no single case of kidnapping has been reported, this shows this gang are the real problem why would anyone want them released? They should be charged with murder alongside kidnapping for ransom, police must follow-up diligently on the case and the state government should show interest because they have harmed people of the state.
A victim kidnapped by the arrested gang expressed readiness to testify in court against the arrested kidnappers.
“I was a victim of kidnapping in Jalingo, I was kidnapped by this gang and they confessed to kidnapping me but the Police is trying to release them on bail because of some funny pressure, I paid heavily to be free from their den and even the trauma I and my family went through, I want to call on the leadership of Police in Taraba state to ensure justice is done, they must be prosecuted diligently many of us who are victims are ready and willing to testify against them in court, we will resist any attempt to undermine the case.”