The Ministry of Justice on Thursday put an end to the embarrassment of the Senate President, Dr. Abubakat Bukola Saraki, and Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed of Kwara State by the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, and the Presidency on the Offa bank robbery for which Saraki has been receiving repeated invitations to report to Police to answer to a suspect’s testimony linking him to the robbery.
The Ministry of Justice supervised by the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mallam Abubakar Malami, reprimanded the police that there was no evidence that linked Senate President Bukola Saraki and Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed to the suspects arrested in the Offa bank robbery in Kwara State being investigated by the Police.
The Justice Ministry, in the letter dated June 22, 2018, admonished the police that they would need to ramp up their investigation and also painstakingly explore all critical areas before identifying the Senate President as a suspect in the robbery incidence in Offa, much less filing charges against him.
Accordingly, the Public Prosecution Office in the Ministry of Justice in a letter by Mohammed U.E, Director, Public Prosecution of the Federation to Idris Ibrahim, Inspector General of Police (IGP), stated that from evidence in the interim report on the matter, his office could not establish a nexus between Saraki, Ahmed, and the suspects.
The Public Prosecution Office also exonerated Yusuf Abdulwahab, Chief of Staff to Governor Ahmed, one of Kwara State Government officials arrested by the Police for conspiring with the prime suspects; the Prosecutor insisted that no evidence is credible enough to sustain any charge based on any offence known to law against him.
The Public Prosecution Office declared in the later: “For the Senate President and the Kwara State Governor, this Office is unable to establish from the evidence in the interim report a nexus between the alleged offence and the suspects. Hence, it in our advice that further and thorough investigation in this regard be carried out.
“Areas to be covered include but not limited to the following:
“i. Establish whether the planning and the execution of the robbery attack of the 5th April 2018 at Offa was carried out at their instance, knowledge or approval.
“ii. Whether the weapons used for the robbery attack aforementioned were supplied by either the Senate President, Bukola Saraki or the Governor of Kwara State, Abdulfatai Ahmed.
“iii. And any other area or areas that may assist in establishing a prima facie case of aiding and abetting crime, or accessory after the fact.”
The April 5 Offa bank robbery led to the death of 33 persons, including pregnant women and 12 police officers. The Police claimed in their investigation that the suspects said they had “direct link” to Saraki and Ahmed.
The Police has indicated that only six prime suspects should be charged to court for armed robbery and murder.