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I was offered visa to implicate Saraki – Offa robbery suspect tells court



One of the principal suspects in the resumed trial of Offa bank robbery case at the Kwara State High Court, Ilorin, Ayoade Akinnibosun, yesterday, told the court how the former Commander, Intelligence Response Team (IRT) squad, ACP Abba Kyari, offered him N10 million to implicate former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, in the case.

The suspect said Kyari also promised to give him visa to any country of his choice, if he took the option to implicate Saraki, but he turned down the offer.

Akinnibosun, Ibikunle Ogunleye, Adeola Abraham and two others were arraigned by the police for criminal conspiracy to rob the bank, murder of nine policemen and other citizens, and illegal possession of firearms.

About 10 persons were feared killed in the incident, while other residents of Offa sustained serious injuries.

However, during cross-examination by the defence counsel at the court, Mathias Emeribe (SAN), Akinninbosun said he was offered N10 million to claim that Saraki asked them to carry out the operation.

Akinnibosun’s words: “He said I should admit and say Saraki was the one who asked us to go and rob. I told him I wouldn’t do it; that I will rather die for what I didn’t do than to lie against an innocent man.

“He asked me to think over his offer very well. At this point, he ordered officers Hassan and Mashood to return me to a separate cell, different from where others are, and stop torturing me.”

The suspect said he was not allowed to write any statement in Ilorin, except his biodata, until they were conveyed to Abuja in a tinted bus, where he was later kept in a place called “abattoir”. There, the suspect said some herdsmen were killed in his presence, adding that he was mercilessly tortured and shot in the leg to implicate Saraki.

He maintained that Saraki had nothing to do with the robbery case.

“We were like 15 to 20 taken to Abuja. I only know few of them. We were put outside and served meal, but I couldn’t eat because my hands were paralysed due to the torture I went through in their hands in Ilorin. They asked Kunle Ogunleye to feed me.

“They separated five of us, put us in the generator house and Hassan Attila ordered they brought some men. They went to bring five Fulani men. They brought them and killed them all in my presence. I was told, that was not a film. He asked me to stretch my legs and shot my right leg. He shot the second leg, but when I tried shifting the leg, it hit my thumb,” he said.

The defendant then went ahead to show the gunshot wound on his legs to the court.

The presiding judge, Justice Alimat Salman, adjourned the case till February 13, 2023.


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