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More Details Emerge on Offa Bank Robberies

More details of the robbery of banks and killings in Offa, Kwara State on Thursday are emerging.

No fewer than 50 dead bodies were counted by the Vigilance Group of Nigeria, Offa, Kwara State chapter after the dare devil robbers attacked and robbed five banks.

The Operations Commander of the group, Wasiu Adepoju disclosed this on Saturday.

“After the robbery, we counted about 50 dead policemen and civilians. They shattered the bodies with bullets. They targeted mainly the heads of their victims,” he said.

However, the state Commissioner of police, Mr. Lawan Ado, said 17 people, comprising nine police officers and eight civilians, died in the attacks.

Adepoju told the press that the robbers took the local security personnel by surprise, stressing that there was little they could do when they learnt of the robbery because of the sophisticated weapons the robbers came with.

He stated that the bandits stormed the area and started shooting indiscriminately with heavy guns, adding that they ran to inform the police as they did not have any ammunition to defend themselves or to confront the robbers.

Adepoju stated that before they could reach the police station, the bandits had already killed some victims, including policemen.

A retired police inspector, Mr. James Oyeyemi, who lost her daughter, Grace Makinde, an inspector, to the robbery, said the bandits were able to operate unhindered because of the sophisticated weapons they used.

Oyeyemi said: “The police said they do not have the kind of weapons the robbers came with. The police have AK-47, while the robbers came with machine guns as I gathered.

“How could someone with AK-47 face somebody with machine gun? The police do not have sufficient weapons.

“In the past, the IG used to equip the police with armoured car and bulletproof vests. So where are they now? They do not maintain the vehicles for operations, they do not buy arms and they do not pay them well? How do they want the police to perform? They cannot perform.”

The 72-year-old, who said he retired in 1998 after 35 years of service, accused the police of not officially informing families of the slain police officers of what happened to their relations.

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