Friday Olokor and Adelani Adepegba
The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has said that 205 critical security assets, 71 public warehouses and 248 privately-owned stores were looted across the country during the violence that attended the #EndSARS protests.
He also disclosed that 1,596 suspects were arrested in connection with the looting out of which 1,117 had been arraigned.
Addressing command Commissioners of Police and other senior officers during a virtual meeting on Friday, the IG admitted for the first time that the #EndSARS protests were hijacked by miscreants.
He also said the #EndSARS campaigners meant well for the police, stressing that they were infiltrated by individuals with criminal intentions.
Adamu said, “I must, however, note that for citizens that are advancing criminal intents and subversive agenda to infiltrate the ranks of genuine advocates of police reform, destroy and loot on a massive scale critical public and private property, vandalise Nigeria police assets that were built with taxpayers’ money and through the collective sacrifice of the citizens, is most unjustifiable.”
He said statistics collated between October 11 when the protests assumed a national dimension and October 27 indicated that 14 states recorded major violence.
Giving a breakdown of those in custody, the IG said while 520 suspects were arrested in Lagos, 367 in Plateau; 210 in the Federal Capital Territory and 142 in Kwara State.
Similarly, 82 suspects were apprehended in Osun; 60 in Adamawa and 36 in Kano and Ogun states, respectively.
Thirty-three suspects were nabbed in Edo; 20 each in Kaduna and Akwa Ibom; 15 in Abia and Delta and 13 in Oyo and Ekiti states, respectively.
Furthermore, 10 suspects were arrested in Rivers and four in Ondo State.
The police boss further disclosed that 10 firearms including eight AK-47 rifles carted away during the attack on police stations, and a locally-made pistol had been recovered.
He added, “Furthermore, 205 critical national security assets, corporate facilities and private property were attacked, burnt or vandalised.
“In total, 71 public warehouses and 248 privately owned stores were looted in the country. A total of 51 civilian fatalities and 37 civilian injuries have been recorded while 22 policemen were gruesomely murdered with 26 others injured by the protesters.”
Meanwhile, the IG on Friday confirmed the arrest of about 53 persons who participated in looting the orientation camp of the National Youth Service Corps in the Kubwa area of the FCT.
According to him, the NYSC in FCT “was heavily looted”, foodstuffs taken, windows broken, burglaries broken and taken away, “everything that you can think of was looted”, while the clinics where drugs were kept for the benefit of corps members were looted.”