An assistant superintendent of police, Vincent Maxwell, on Thursday said the officers killed by soldiers in Taraba State were among the best on the inspector-general of police’s intelligence response team (IRT).
Three policemen – an Inspector and two Sergeants – and a civilian were on a covert operation in Taraba State when they were killed on Wednesday by the Nigerian troops.
Nigerian army said it was an error stating that the policemen were suspected to be kidnappers after they refused to stop three consecutive times at army checkpoints.
Reacting to the incident in a post shared by Abba Kyari, head of the IRT, Maxwell said the deceased policemen were responsible for several heroic deeds, including securing the arrest of Chukwudumeme Onwuamadik also known as Evans, a notorious kidnapper currently on trial in Lagos.
Maxwell said they were also part of the team that apprehended over 20 members of the Boko Haram insurgent group responsible for the abduction of over 200 students from Government Girls Secondary School in the town of Chibok, Borno state in 2014.
They were also said to have been involved in the arrest of Umar Abdulmalik, a Boko Haram commander suspected to be the mastermind of the bombings in Nyanya and Kuje areas of Abuja in 2015.
Kyari added that they were part of the team that secured the release of Musa Umar, father-in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari’s aide de camp (ADC), who was kidnapped in May.
“They similarly participated in the arrest of Umar Abdulmalik, overall Boko Haram Commander Of North Central, Nigeria and several of his group members,” Kyari said.
“They arrested the kidnappers of two American and two Canadian citizens in Kaduna State and most recently, they took part in the rescue of Magajin Garin Daura in Kano State during which 13 suspects who carried out the abduction were arrested in Kano.
“And most recently, the rescue Of Magajin Garin Daura in Kano State and arrest of the 13 terrorists responsible for kidnapping the Magajin Garin Daura in his home town Daura town Katsina state on the 1/5/19, among many other outstanding records of the team.”
The police and army have set up a joint investigation panel to probe the incident.