The Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has, Thursday, finally met with a team of investigators in his office over allegation he is “directly linked” to the robbery that took place at Offa, Kwara state. Saraki Dr. Saraki, during the interaction with the investigators, reiterated his innocence in the crime.
In a tweet, Thursday, by his Special Assistant on New Media, Olu Onemola, Saraki said he had nothing to do with either the robbery incident nor any other criminal activities.
According to the tweet, “”Further to the invitation to the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, by the Police on July 23, 2018, and his written response to them on July 24, 2018 on why he could not see them that day — today at about 1:40pm, the Senate President met with a team of investigators on the Offa Robbery case in his office.
“Dr. Saraki, used the opportunity to reiterate the fact that he has nothing to do with either the robbery incident on April 5, 2018, or any other criminal activity.”
Recall that Saraki had written the Police, explaining why he could not honour the force’s invitation over the allegation.
In the letter, Saraki had said, “For the record, I should mention that I received your letter at 8:30 pm on Monday 23rd July, 2018, inviting me for the next day at 8am. The two lawyers whose advise I needed were in Calabar and Lagos and have to travel to Abuja today.
“As you are aware, the deputy president of the senate was unable to leave his residence this morning to preside over the senate having been prevented from doing so by security agents. If he had been able to preside over the senate, I would have honoured your invitation. “The absence of both presiding officers would have voided the sitting of the senate. This would have been damaging to national interest, particularly in the light of very important legislative matters that needed to be addressed in view of the imminent recess of the national assembly.
“These included consideration of the electoral bill which was incidentally passed today. You will recall that Mr President had earlier directed as a courtesy to this office that in the event of any request for further information from me, you should either send your personnel to my office or obtain a written response from me.
“I need to place on record as well, that following the incident of being harassed and threatened at my residence by the police early this morning, I’m deeply concerned over my physical security. “I request you therefore, to please assign your personnel who need information on this matter to meet me in my office immediately after plenary, today or tomorrow or at any other day at your convenience.”
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Police, also on Thursday, insisted that Saraki must report to the Force Intelligence Response Team, Guzape, Abuja to answer to the allegation. The police also denied reports making the rounds that the Senate President was exonerated in the case based on report of the Director of Public Prosecution, DPP.
Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, in a statement in Abuja, said the reaction became necessary following an online media reports to the effect that Saraki was exonerated on the basis that “there was no evidence that linked the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki and Kwara State Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed to the armed robbery attack that left 31 persons dead in Offa, Kwara State, in April”,this year.
It said, “It is incumbent on the Force to educate the writer of the story that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) of the Federation in the legal advice did not restrain or restrict the Force from investigating further, the indictments against the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki and the Governor of Kwara State, Abdulfattah Ahmed by the principal suspects arrested in connection with the Offa bank robbery of 5th April, 2018, “the statement said.
It added that” the DPP advice did not exonerate the Senate President, it only called for further investigations into the matter.” The statement read full:” It is in the course of further investigations into the case that a letter of invitation dated 23rdJuly, 2018 was sent to the Senate President to appear on 24th July, 2018 at 8.00am before the Investigation Team at Intelligence Response Team office, Guzape Junction, Abuja.
” Consequently, the Force is hereby re-affirming that the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki has case to answer by virtue of the facts that the statements submitted by the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki earlier to the Investigation Team was not explicit and detailed enough, and was discovered to require further clarifications and interrogation, and coupled with the fact the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki in his statement, claimed that the full text of the statement of the suspects who indicted him in their confessional statements to the Police was not shown to him. It is therefore, imperative for the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki to report to the Police to make further statement after sighting the full text of the statement of the suspects.
“Furthermore, the Force wishes to inform the media and the public that investigation is still ongoing on the Offa bank robbery and the indictment against the Senate President from the confessions of some the arrested principal suspects, and that, there is no political influence or consideration in the matter. “The media and the Police are veritable partners in crime prevention, protection of lives and property, and absolute compliance with the rule of law. The media are implored not to allow the pages of their esteemed publications be used to misinform the public.”