Police reject Kwara cops’ wrongful dismissal claim, vow prosecution

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The Nigeria Police Force has upheld the dismissal of Sergeant Shola Akano and Corporal Babatunde Glorious attached to the Kwara State Command.

Alamo and Glorious had claimed their dismissal from the Nigeria Police Force was based on their refusal to accept a bribe to compromise an investigation they were conducting.

However,the Force spokesperson, Muyiwa Adejobi,in a statement on Tuesday, said a panel set up to investigative the claims by the policemen found their story to be untrue and upheld their earlier dismissal.

According to Adejobi, the dismissed officers were found guilty of extorting money from two suspects in an advance fraud fee case they handled in 2020.

Adejobi said, “According to findings by the Special Investigation Unit, Force Criminal Investigations Department, Abuja, which reviewed their case, the duo of Sgt. Shola Akano and Corporal Babatunde Glorious were attached to the Public Complaint Bureau, Office of the Public Relations Officer, Kwara State Police Command.

Their primary duty was to handle complaints brought forward by members of the public bordering on police unprofessionalism and misconduct.

“Unfortunately, during the investigation of a case of conspiracy and advance fee fraud in February 2020, they engaged in misconduct that warranted their dismissal from the Nigeria Police Force. In the course of investigating the case, the duo arrested two suspects – Fatai Olarewaju and Awogbemi Olayinka, a student of the Federal Polytechnic Offa, Kwara State.

“On February 7, 2020, the officers booked and took one of the suspects, Olarewaju, from the police cell where he was detained to a Zenith Bank branch at Unity Road, Ilorin. They coerced the suspect into withdrawing N1,190,000.00 from his account, which was collected by Corporal Glorious. Following this, the suspect was returned to the cell and later released on administrative bail on the same day. However, the withdrawn sum, two mobile phones, and other personal effects were not released to him.

“Rather than following the proper procedure, Sgt. Shola Akano and Corporal Babatunde Glorious continued to demand more money from the suspect to close the case, thus engaging in further acts of extortion. These actions were in direct violation of their duties and code of conduct as police officers. This prompted Mr Fatai to report the matter to the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of the IGP X-Squad for investigation.

“Subsequently, verifiable evidence, including the conversion of one of the mobile phones, an iPhone 11 Pro, for personal use by Corporal Glorious, was presented during their trial.

“Based on a thorough examination of the evidence and the testimonies of all parties involved, the duo were found guilty and dismissed from the Nigeria Police Force.”

Adejobi said many panels set up to probe the duo’s sacking had affirmed their dismissal and recommended them for prosecution,  adding that charges would be filed against them.

“It is essential to note that the same complaint of wrongful dismissal was made by the officers before the #EndSARS panel in Ilorin. Their dismissal was upheld after a careful review of the evidence and testimonies from all concerned parties.

“A series of reviews and recommendations from panels upheld the dismissal and prosecution of the duo, and they will be prosecuted accordingly,” Adejobi said.

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