The police in Zaria have arrested one Uche Owunna, 30, of Port-Harcourt Road, Sabon Gari, Zaria who is believed to be behind the various assassinations that recently took place in Zaria, especially the killings of Igbos residing in the city; all in the name of Boko Haram.
The Kaduna State Command’s Public Relations Officer, DSP Aminu Lawal, had confirmed the arrest to Daily Trust yesterday, saying that the suspect is now being interrogated at the police state headquarters.
“A complainant came to report to us that somebody has threatened him. He said the person has directed him to pay certain amount of money or he will be killed. Having received that information, we went in and napped the suspect at the point of collecting the money.
“Investigation is ongoing and this would help us to get more information on the activities of the suspect,” DSP Lawal said.
However, a source that is close to the suspect, who craved for anonymity, told Daily Trust that Owunna was arrested on Tuesday by the police following a tipoff. The source said Owunna was arrested at a joint in Zaria when he went to collect the ransom he demanded.
The source said luck ran out of Owunna when he called one Samuel, an Igbo man, of Sabon Gari, Zaria on phone and told him that his name was Ibrahim.
“The suspect told Samuel that his name is on the list of Igbos to be killed in Zaria, saying that ‘for your gesture to me when I was young, I will not execute the mission. For that reason, I want you to pay N50, 000 only to stay alive’ the suspect told Samuel on phone,” the source said.
The source further explained that Owunna had told Samuel that his gang was behind the killing of Dr Ago, a medical doctor at Zaria Railways Hospital, who was killed along two others in Zaria last month.
“Having heard that the suspect’s name was Ibrahim, Samuel became apprehensive, thinking that it was Boko Haram. What came to Samuel’s mind was that Boko Haram are after him. Our belief here in Zaria is that all the assassinations that took place in Zaria were done by the Boko Haram. This was why Samuel went to report to police and they were lucky to have apprehended the man when he came for the money he demanded,” our source said.
It would be recalled that Zaria had of late became notorious for killing of innocent people where members of the Boko Haram are always blamed for the act.
Just last month three people, including the Medical Director of Railways Hospital, Zaria, were killed at a beer parlour in Sabon Gari, Zaria. Before that, a Zaria businessman and a mobile policeman were also killed in the same month.
The frequent killings led to the restriction of movement of motorbikes to 9pm. Also, that made Igbo communities in Kaduna and Zaria to down tool for some days by locking their shops.