Police arrest 9 suspected IPOB/MASSOB members in Abia state

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The police command in Abia has arrested nine suspected members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Movement for the Actualisation of Sovereign State of  Biafra (MASSOB) and Biafra Independent Movement (BIM).

The Commissioner of Police, Mr Chris Ezike disclosed this during at a press conference on Wednesday in Umuahia.

The suspects are Ikedi Orji (38), Samuel Elem (38), Festus Oko (32), Michael Okoroafor (45) and Okoro Chukwu (33).

Others are John Ogbu (44), Cyril Elobuike (45), Dominic Onovo (56) and Alika Chukwuemeka (52).

Ezike said the items recovered from the suspects included two motorcycles, Biafran identify cards, one Biafran magazine, one Biafran National Anthem booklet and a Biafran flag.

He said that his men also recovered three blue uniform shirts of the outfit, badges and service numbers from the suspects.

He narrated how soldiers on duty at Abia State University Uturu military check point intercepted the first five suspects all from Ebonyi en route Owerri, Imo, on Nov. 25.

He said the last four suspects from Enugu en route Owerri were intercepted near Lokponta in Umunneochi on Nov. 26, by the patrol team to Mbala Division.

While parading them, he added that they admitted to being members of MASSOB and BIM, but denied belonging to IPOB.

“Intelligence information is indicative that suspects may be part of the IPOB group that unleashed mayhem in some states recently,” he said.

Some of the suspects who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) said they were only travelling to Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu Library, for the birthday/memorial lecture of the late Biafran warlord.

In another development, the police said it had recovered N7.93 million out of the N91.18 million discovered from empowerment scam.

Ezike said it arrested 18 suspects of the 22 individuals and groups who masqueraded as empowerment companies, church cooperative, poverty alleviation units, wonder financial institutions among others.

According to him, the police as of Nov. 27, received 6,728 complaints from various scam victims in Aba.

He said in the two past two weeks of his resumption in the command, 57 suspects had been arrested.

He said the suspects were involved in various crimes including kidnapping, armed robbery, cultism, stealing, child abuse among others.

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