The Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, has said that the action plan being implemented by the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) to curb Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV), particularly all forms of abuse against women and children in the country, was yielding positive results.
The IGP made the affirmation on the heels of the arrest of five members of a kidnap for ransom gang which specializes in the abduction of women and girls, sexually abusing them, and obtaining ransom from their families before their release.
A press statement by the Force Public relations Officer (FPRO), CP Frank Mba, Sunday in Abuja, said: “The five suspects were arrested by operatives of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) following massive manhunt by the Force for the perpetrators of the recent trend of abduction of women in some states in the South-South, especially Port Harcourt and its environs.
“The victims are subjected to series of sexual abuses and ransom demanded from their families before their release.
“The suspects are: Osinachi Ngwakwe, 22, from Ubakala in Umuahia South LGA, Abia state; Sammy Junior Inordee ‘alias T-Boy, 27, from Gwarra in Khana LGA, Rivers state; Epo-Bari Nwolu, 26, from Ogale in Eleme, LGA, Rivers state; Yabari Gbarale, 29, and Barine Yilda alias Albino or Yellow, 30, both from Gwara as well.”
The spokesperson said, ‘Investigations reveal that the suspects target lone female drivers of Porsche cars as they drive out of offices, shopping malls or any vulnerable places.
“They thereafter, trail them to lonely roads, abduct and take them to their criminal hideouts, sexually abuse them and demand ransom from their families before their release.
“They also sell off their exotic cars. Four AK47 rifles, one double barrel shotgun and set of military camouflage uniforms, suspected to have been illegally acquired, which they wear to beat security checks, were recovered.”
Mba said effort was being intensified to arrest other fleeing gang members and recover more weapons and stolen vehicles used by the suspects for their operations.
Meanwhile, the IGP has noted that a total of 2,792 suspects were arrested for SGBV and other sexual related offences last year.
The FPRO said the arrests were linked to the 2,573 cases currently being prosecuted under the Force Gender Unit in various courts across the country, just as others were under investigations.
“The IGP enjoins parents and guardians to keep a close watch on their children and wards and report any incidents of abuse against women and children.
“He expresses displeasure with the prevailing culture of silence in concealing crimes against women and children and calls for improved collaboration with the Police.
“He assures that the Force is well repositioned to protect women and children and confront violent crimes in the country,” the statement further disclosed.