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Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Mob sets Zenith bank Abuja branch ablaze

A riot policeman attached to a branch of Zenith Bank at Mpape, a suburb of Abuja, on Monday Jan 31 allegedly shot and killed a taxi driver and a female passenger.

Three other passengers in the taxi marked Niger XA 783 SRP were said to have sustained serious injuries and were taken to an undisclosed hospital.

The policeman was said to have fled the scene but he was arrested shortly after an irate mob had set the bank on fire.

Nine vehicles parked in the bank’s premises were also burnt while an Automated Teller Machine was vandalised, looted and then set ablaze by the mob.

Expended bullet shells littered the front of the bank when one of our correspondents visited the scene. It was also observed that the taxi had a thick pool of blood on the driver’s seat.

Many rubber strings, were also seen in the bank’s premises, indicating that the mob might have looted money from the bank.

A split air-conditioner was removed, and set on fire when it could not be taken away due to the confusion at the scene.

The intervention of the police, a detachment of the Brigade of Guard led by the Commander, Brig.-Gen. Emmanuel Atewe, and the Federal Capital Territory Fire Service, saved the lives of the bank workers.

Most of the workers were taken out of the premises in a military pick-up at about 9 am, leaving one who was escorted out of the bank at about 9.55am.

There were two accounts of what led to the shooting. While one has it that the taxi driver dared to make a U-turn in front of the bank after he had been warned by the policeman not to do so, the other account said it was because he attempted to drop off a nursing mother in front of the bank.

The Commissioner of Police, FCT Command, Mr. John Haruna, told journalists that the riot policeman at the centre of the crisis was in custody of the command.

Haruna added that the Nigeria Police Force “does not condone attacks on innocent citizens in any manner by any of its men.’’

“The policeman in this case is in custody; due process will be followed until justice is dispensed,’’ he said, adding that the case would be referred to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for necessary advice.

The Mpape Divisional Police Officer, Mr. Imran Balarabe, explained that he was at home when the Divisional Crime Officer alerted him to the incident.

According to him, he quickly dashed to the scene, only to see hundreds of angry people attacking the bank.

Balarabe said, “When I got to the scene, the whole place was filled with smoke. I had to call my men off from the scene because they could not control the situation.

“I asked them to go back and secure the police station to prevent hoodlums from taking advantage of the confusion to attack the station and steal arms.

“I called for reinforcement and the bank staff who were trapped in the building were eventually rescued and the fire put out by the fire service.”

The DPO explained that the information he had was that the gun went off when the policeman hit the butt on the taxi while ordering the driver not to park in front of the bank.

He stated that it was likely that the gun was not cocked.

Meanwhile, gunmen suspected to be hired assassins have shot dead the Paramount Ruler of Nsit Ubium, Akwa Ibom State, Edidem Robert Obot.

Obot, a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria, was murdered in his palace at Ikot Ekpene Udo at Nsit Ubium Local Government Area around 5pm on Sunday.

The gunmen numbering about three were said to have introduced themselves at the entrance to the palace as visitors on an appointment with the monarch.

On gaining access into the living room, they reportedly fired at the septuagenarian and one of his personal assistants.

While the personal assistant whose name could not be ascertained as at the time of filing this report survived, Obot was not as lucky.

The Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom Command, Mr. Sani Magaji, confirmed the incident.

Source: Punch


nuellla said...

These vandals are useless and may God punish them!
This is people's money in the bank!!!
What has a policeman shooting someone got to do with burning down a bank for God's sake? and hurting others????

may they never find peace. AMEN!!!

Anonymous said...

Nuellla, easy with the masses. The bank is a victim not the depositors of the bank; they will all get their money back.

Enough of cursing of the people let our comment be directed at the main issue at hand; Police Brutality and lack of respect for fellow citizen on the part of the police.

People are bound to respond, now that the bank has suffered so much loss, they will be forced to e involved in the training of this cops.

You cannot stop the masses from speaking. The price of freedom has to be paid.

Anonymous said...

may God keep us safe. But I think the policeman must face life imprisonment for actions. May this never happen again. May the soul of those that died, including the traditional leader, rest in peace. Amen.

Anonymous said...

@nuellla they burnt down the bank so what? pulease donot tell me that you didnt read what the policeman attached to the bank did(donot let money blind ur sense of judgment abeg) freaking serves them right i support the mob oo....since the people that are meant to protect the citizens now kill them the citizens have to protect i wish they beat him up or sth so dat the other policemen would learn from it....useless people kma....dats how they go abt killing innocent people.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...


me said...

why all this

Girl said...

Nuella, surely you don't think the depositors' money is gone? It's the bank's loss, and trust me they make enough money to cover the loss! Maybe next time, they'll restrain their security personnel!

Anonymous said...

all of una so much dey stupid...abeg nuellla i agree with u...curse dem abeg...dey are bastards...putting the lives of their brothers and sisters at risk..that is bullshit

TKB's thoughts said...

@nuella The bank became a target of attack because the mobile policeman was attached to the bank, and for the money, its the bank's loss, I agree with you on the basis that some irrate mob took of the situation to loot the bankuwa

omo jeje said...

This stupid policeman should just rot in jail for the rest of his life. He deserved nothing less.

However, i don't understand why the mob attacked the bank. I don't know how that seemed logical to them.

It's the bank's loss abi? The same way it's the Federal Govts loss when thieves steal your neighborhood transformer abi? Do you know that the bank is owned by people............i.e you and i. The bank will recover the money any which way. If any of you has a pension fund, or you expect some type of severance pay when you are laid off or you retire from work, i bet you that fund is invested (at this very moment) partly in Zenith Bank. That goes for everyone from the cleaners and messengers at the office to the MD. The only way this may not be your money is if you are self-employed or in a small private company.

nuella said...

huh? @Anonymous 7:23: get which money back?
Which masses?
Vandals are not masses!
lynch the policeman! why vandalize? why use the opportunity to steal???
Why do we have this mob mentality in nigeria??? are we animals?
if this was jos, the next thing someone will draw out a machete and start killing pple.

Anonymous said...

It is usually the response of the general public to burn down a place/car or whatever offending structure that represents the offender. Their anger is a Police man attached to Zenith killing a pregnant/nursing mother. After doing the dastard deed, he RAN into the bank. Hence the mob's anger. I sure if they had caught him they wouldn't have burnt the bank. My own is why should he kill two innocent UNARMED people! Nigerian security forces sha!

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