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Police parade cultist ‘defence minister,’ others in C’River

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Joseph Kingston, Calabar

The Cross River state police command has paraded the ‘defense minister’ of the Viking confraternity which is believed to have been part of several deadly cult-related clashes in Ugep, Yakurr local government area of the state, in recent times.

Addressing journalists while parading suspected cultists, kidnappers, robbers, rapists and gun runners, amongst others, on Wednesday, the new commissioner of police, Sikiru Akande, said the ‘defence minister,’ whose name was given as Ibor Usani Ibor, was arrested in Ugep with a pistol.

CP Akande, who officially assumed office just a few days ago, also said that he was in Cross River for a mission of returning the state to its once peaceful, crime-free status and he would ensure he fulfilled his mission without fear or favour.

He said residents should now sleep with their eyes closed because he was “in town strictly to ensure security of lives and property and that, as such, the command was going to wage relentless and serious onslaught on criminals across the state. We have created a robust intelligence network/platform with members of the public.”

His words: “I have a task and that task is keeping Cross River state safe. The light has come, We need to gainfully engage and reorientate the mind of the youths so they can become more productive so as to build their capacity.

“We are using technology to police the state so that before the crime is being committed, it is nipped in the bud. There shall be no hiding place for criminals because they shall all be smoked out.”

The commissioner further disclosed that one Prince Okon Etim, the second in command to a wanted kidnap kingpin known as ‘Romance’ was also picked up by the state security outfit ‘Operation Akpakwu’ and that the 22-year-old Etim confessed to belonging to Black Axe confraternity.

Other suspected criminals paraded included Ikpi Oden Patrick, Imini Ibiang, Okokon Etim Effiong, Clement Okon Effiong, Henshaw Asuquo Inyang, Larence Ekpenyong Essien and Ajah Chininso.

According to him, the suspects were arrested with two locally made pistols, one foreign pistol with six rounds of 9mm ammunition, four (4) live cartridges, one handset, ATM cards and other items.

In an interview, the ‘defence minister,’ Ibor, told our reporter that he had denounced Vikings confraternity for the Baggers and that he had handed over his gun to his clan head with an undertaking written.

“I denounced Vikings’ confraternity since seven months ago even though I was their defence minister. I am now Bagger. This gun you see being paraded with me is the one I surrendered to my clan head the day I denounced Vikings and I even signed an undertaking at the clan head’s palace.”

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