The controversy over the May 4 killing of Olaitan Oyerinde, Principal Private Secretary to Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole, continued on Thursday with the police insisting that he was assassinated. But the State Security Service disagreed, saying that Oyerinde was killed by robbers.
Despite the controversy, the two agencies said they were collaborating to harmonise the two case files.
Meanwhile, the SSS has handed over the six suspects in its custody to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Abuja.
The SSS on August 1 paraded Sani Abubakar, a Nigerien; Mohammed Abdullahi, Raymond Origbo, Chikezie Edeh, Saidu Yakubu (aka Imam) and Hassan Bashiru in connection with Oyerinde’s killing.
Deputy Director, Public Relations of the SSS, Marilyn Ogar, told reporters that Oyerinde was murdered by the trio of Abdullahi, Origbo and Edeh.
According to her, the three other suspects, Yakubu, Abubakar and Bashiru were buyers of stolen items.
But the police on Thursday listed eight suspects as being involved in the killing of Oyerinde.
Force Deputy Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, who briefed reporters, said the initial investigation by the panel set up by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, led to the arrest of Muhammed Yelwa on June 26 in Yola, Adamawa State, following recordof calls on Oyerinde’s BlackBerry allegedly stolen when gunmen invaded his Benin residence.
He said the stolen phone was recovered from the suspect on arrest and had been identified. He said Yelwa named one Idris Abdulhamid, 21, of Girei, Adamawa State, a receiver of stolen phones.
Mba said Abdulhamid, when arrested, named his cousin, Hassan Aliyu, resident at the Cattle Market area, Benin as the person that sold Oyerinde’s phone to him, leading to his arrest on June 26. Aliyu allegedly admitted to receiving over 30 stolen phones.
He in turn mentioned one Bashir Ibrahim now in SSS custody as one of the major suppliers of stolen phones as well as Garba Maisamari, who sold the BlackBerry to him, leading to his arrest on June 28.
Mba added that Maisamari owned up to selling the phone to Aliyu on May 4 as well as buying all the stolen items from the operation at Oyerinde’s residence, including two laptops and two Galaxy tablets he allegedly sold to Bashir.
After their arrest, he claimed that the duo confessed to participating in the killing along with one Auta Umaru and Moses Okoro.
He said, “Okoro however brought a new twist to the investigation alleging that they killed the deceased at the instance of Maisamari, who claimed he had been approached by a man who promised to pay them N20m if they successfully executes Oyerinde.”
According to the police spokesman, Okoro also confessed to have been involved in the raiding of Agenebode Police Station in 2010 during which a women police constable was killed and several guns carted away.