EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Police officers sent to fight kidnapping caught receiving bribes

The Enugu state police command has denied reports circulatng on social media that there was a bomb explosion at Otigba junction within Enugu metropolis today Saturday July 13th. The command in a statement released today, said the claims of a bomb explosion is false. Read the statement below The attention of the Command has been drawn to the misleading and false video in circulation in some sections of the social media on an alleged bomb blast at Otigba Junction within Enugu metropolis. The Command, hereby, wish to inform members of the public particularly those who may have been misinformed with such that there is no bomb incident and explosion in entire Enugu State. Hence, members of the public are advised to ignore the misleading information and go about their normal lawful businesses. This false information is an attempt by mischief makers to cause panic and fear in the minds of law-abiding members of the public''.

Some police officers deployed to curb kidnapping along the now dreaded Ife-Ibadan hightway, South-west Nigeria, were on Monday caught extorting motorists.

The policemen stationed at the outskirt of Ibadan, Ikire, Gbongan and Ile-Ife demanded bribe from the driver of the vehicle conveying this reporter and 17 other passengers on Monday evening.

The journey lasted an hour and 15 minutes.

Some of the motorists who earlier spoke with PREMIUM TIMES confirmed the habitual extortion by officers adding that these have heightened now with additional road blocks mounted along the road.

While the police officers in the outskirts of Ibadan and Ikire collected the naira notes discreetly without questioning the driver, the ones at Gbongan and Ile-Ife did not.

An officer at Gbongan, with the inscription Akosoba A on his uniform, collected a 100-naira note from the driver and gave a change of fifty naira.

Also, a policeman in Ile-Ife, who appeared in a camouflage, instructed the motorist to park for raising a question, but changed his mind after a fifty-naira note was slid into his hands.

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Kidnapping upsurge

More police officers have been deployed Ife-Ibadan hightway to check rampant cases of kidnapping.

In April, this newspaper reported how an Ibadan-based lawyer, Musibau Adetunbi, and his driver were kidnapped along Ibadan-Ife expressway.

In May, a lecturer in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, was kidnapped and eventually releasedafter paying a ransom of 5 million naira.

Also, suspected armed herders attacked passengers along the Ife-Ibadan Highway, killing Adenipekun Ademiju, a civil servant, in June.

As published by Punch, Mr Ademiju was said to have boarded a vehicle at Osu town going to Ibadan when he and other passengers were attacked at Ikire community along the expressway.

Bribery entrenched?

With the advent of social media, many police officers have been caught on camera soliciting bribes at roadblocks in recent years.

Although several Inspector Generals of Police have banned roadblocks in the past but they remain one of the easiest ways for these officers to extort motorists.

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In 2013, a sergeant was dismissed after a viral video showed him soliciting bribes from motorists in Lagos.

In June 2017, four officers were dismissed for extorting a citizen in Ijebu Ode Area Command, the same jurisdiction where Mr Afolabi was caught on camera by PREMIUM TIMES.

In May 2018, two police officers were caught on camera extorting motorists along Ijebu Ode-Ibadan Road in Ogun State.

When the multimedia evidence of the officers’ misconduct was forwarded to Abayomi Shogunle, head of police complaints unit in Abuja, he

However, months after the complaint was made and a tracking number issued, the police are yet to take any definiteaction.

Police spokesperson, Frank Mba, requested to see the video clip before commenting. He did not respond more than 24 hours after the video was sent to him.