Posted by Mayowa Okekale, Abuja | 19 July 2015 | 3,232 times
The Department of State Service (DSS) last night stoutly defended its siege, last week, on the Abuja residence of immediate past former National Security Adviser (NSA), Colonel Sambo Dasuki (rtd.).
It said in a statement issued in Abuja and signed by Tony Opuiyo: “On 16th July, 2015, about 1650 hours, based on credible intelligence linking the immediate past NSA, Mohammed Sambo DASUKI (Col Rtd) with alleged plans to commit treasonable felony against the Nigerian State, operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) conducted a search on the properties belonging to the former NSA, Mohammed Sambo DASUKI (Col Rtd). The properties are on Nos. 13, John Khadya Street, Nos. 46, Nelson Mandela Street, both at Asokoro, Abuja, and Nos. 3 Sabon Birni Road, Gwiwa Area, Sokoto, Sokoto State.
“The search operations was planned to be simultaneously conducted, but DASUKI, refused the operatives entry into his main residence located at No. 13 John Khadya Street, Asokoro, despite being presented with a genuine and duly signed search warrant. Consequently, what was to last not more than two (2) hours, lasted more than ten (10) hours, up till the early hours of 17th July, 2015.”
According to Opuiyo, “The search was thoroughly conducted, and several items recovered, among which were some incriminating items. These include seven (7) high caliber rifles, (high assault weapons), several magazines and military related gears.
The team also recovered twelve (12) new vehicles, out of which five (5) were bullet proofs. These vehicles which are all exotic vehicles were retrieved from SAMBO’s residence having failed to produce evidence of ownership. For instance, what could he be doing with five (5) bullet proof cars as a retired NSA? These cars which from all available evidence were purchased with tax payers money, were being kept for possible sinister enterprise.
The Service would want to state categorically that this search operation is not a witch hunt. The Service decided to move at this time in line with current Management resolve to be proactive and pre-empt individuals with penchant for impunity and lawlessness from putting back the nation to the dark days. The Service is also aware that the lethal arms and the vehicles recovered were not reflected in SAMBO’s handover notes or what could a former NSA be doing with destructive weapons and bullet proof cars which put together could disrupt the peace of any city in Nigeria for a while.”
On the search of Dasuki’s three properties, including the Sokoto residence, the statement said that “the Service is aware that in his capacity and given his antecedents, he might decide to use any of his residences for such diabolical plans, rather than his main residence.”
The statement spoke of the sense of maturity and professionalism of the officers assigned for the task, saying that there would have been a clash between the soldiers guarding the house and Service operatives, as Sambo directed the soldiers on duty not to allow any movement into his house, despite the subsisting court order.
The Service assured the public that it would not trample on the freedom of individuals or groups as guaranteed by the Nigerian Constitution. It emphasised by the current administration’s position on transparency and probity underlined by justice and equity for all Nigerians.
“We would not hesitate to go after any person or group of persons, no matter how highly placed once such individual (s) breach or attempt to breach the laws of the Federation as the days for impunity and indecisiveness in the face of unpatriotic acts by individuals operating against the State are over,” the statement added.
The Service however appealed to all Nigerians to be law abiding and partner with it, in ensuring a peaceful and secured nation. “Those who are bent on breaking the rules governing our peaceful co-existence, due to either the huge ill gotten wealth they have acquired or imaginary hold they think they have on our nation’s survival, are being warned to rethink,” the DSS said.
It vowed to “use all constitutional means as defined by its mandate to deal decisively with such unpatriotic individuals.”
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