The Kogi State Security Joint Task Force has killed a notorious criminal gang leader, Kabir Bala during a gun duel with the security operatives at Ejule in Ofu Local government area of Kogi State.
The State Commissioner of Police (CP), Akeem .A .Yusuf disclosed this while briefing the newsmen at Police Command Headquarters in Lokoja yesterday.
According to him, Bala was an unrepentant criminal, who was once granted pardon by the state government.
Yusuf explained that at about 4.30 am hours on Thursday at Ejule,Kabiru Bala and his gang members on sighting Joint Security team opened fire on them and started shooting sporadically.
He added that the security operative team engaged the hoodlums, stressing that the said Kabiru Bala (AKA Okwo) was neutralised in the process while other gang members escaped injuries.
The CP said that following the decision by the Kogi State Security to tackle the upsurge of criminal activities in the State , the state government had in 2018 granted pardon in prerogative of mercy as part of rehabilitation to Bala in Ejule , Ofu Local Government Area of the State.
Among the offences allegedly committed by the notorious leader and his gang members are the burning alive of one Mrs Salome Abu, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) woman leader in Ofu LGA in her residence on 18th November, 2019 at Ochadamu; killing of two lgaia youths, Umoru Areh and UNekwu Sule on 20th Aprii, 2022 at Ejule and killing of five Fulani herders namely; Ibrahim, Haruna and Shuaibu along Alloma Road, Ofu LGA in April, 2022 and Muhammed and Dauda at Imoko in Ofu LGA on 3’d March, 2023
“Other crimes committed by Kabir Bala and his gang are: attack on troops of Nigerian Navy and dispossessed them of four Rifles at Alloma village on 4h March, 2022. Though, the Firearms were later returned to the Navy following high-powered intervention.
“Attack on Elisha Aya, Pastor and founder of Kingdom Faith Assembly Ejuie on 18th March, 2022 who later paid N1 million to Bala as levy for establishing a Church.
“The invasion of Egane Fulani settlement, burning of 213 huts, rustling of 122 cows on 25th December, 2022”, CP stated.
He further stated that based on the above facts, the decision reached at the ‘State Security Council meeting held on 20tln June 2023, that; the state pardon granted to Kabir Bala in 2018 be revoked immediately. . Security agencies must go after Kabir Bala and arrest him immediately for‘ prosecution.
“All known agents of Kabir Bala in criminal activities must be apprehended to face ‘the law. All illegal arms in the possession of criminals in that area should be recovered for peace of the State.
“Joint Operations should be set up comprising the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy, Nigeria Police, 053, Civil Defence to go after Kabir Bala and his gang to arrest them and receiver the arms in their possession , he posited.
According to the Police boss, items recovered from his premises include one AK 47 rifle with three fully loaded magazines six locally fabricated weapons two phones and charms.