By Deborah Coker
Benin, Jan. 4, 2021 The Police Command in Edo on monday confirmed a cell break incident at the Command Headquarters in Benin and dispelled the rumour on the number of escapees.
The confirmation is contained in a statement signed by SP Chidi Nwabuzor, the Police Public Relations Officer of the command.
According to the statement, the incident occurred at about 02:45 hours of Friday, Jan. 1.
Nwabuzor said the command decided to set the record straight, contrary to publications that had gone viral on social media and other platforms alleging that hundreds of armed robbery and kidnapping suspects had escaped.
“Only 10 suspects escaped after the cell break, two of the escapees have already been re-arrested while we have intensified hunt for the remaining eight.”
It said that the publication on social media and other platforms alleging that hundreds of suspected armed robbers and kidnappers escaped from the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) facility was false.
“Edo Police Command wishes to inform the general public that 10 suspects escaped on Jan. 1, 2021 at about 0245hrs (2.45a.m)
“Out of this figure, two have been re-arrested and brought back to custody.
“The figure is not as being maliciously and falsely speculated on social media.”
The PPRO also disclosed that eight of the suspects were detained on the orders of the court.
Giving a breakdown of the cell escapees, he said one was in custody for stealing, another for murder, three for cultism, three for robbery, while the other two were under Police investigation for stealing.
“It is worthy to note that the quick mobilisation and response of officers curbed further escape of suspects.
“The Policemen who were responsible for the safe custody of the escaped suspects have been identified, arrested and detained for departmental disciplinary process.
“Effort is being intensified to re-arrest the fleeing suspects.
“The command has the wherewithal/intelligence to re-arrest the remaining suspects who are on the run, but will still appreciate any useful information from the members of the public.
“No stone will be left unturned in ensuring that all those suspects are re-arrested.
“The Command assures members of the public of its continued commitment to protect lives and property of law abiding citizens,” Nwabuzor said.