•FCT Police nab 15

By Sunday Ani, and Okwe Obi and Molly Kilete, Abuja

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Mustapha Ahmed, director general of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has directed zonal directors and heads of operations to strengthen security in and around its offices and warehouses nationwide.
A statement by the spokesman, Manzo Ezekiel, in Abuja, yesterday, said the directive is to forestall any security breach at NEMA’s facilities across the country.
In the early hours of yesterday, suspected hoodlums stormed the Agric Department Strategic food store located at Tasha, in Abuja and looted food items. Residents said the youths invaded the warehouse located around Tasha area of the community in the early hours of yesterday and looted bags of maize and other grains.
Some said residents of neighbouring Jiwa and Karmo communities trooped toward the site with the intention of partaking in the loot, a development some persons attributed to the current economic hardship in the country.
The initial report said the warehouse belonged to NEMA. Manzo, in a telephone conversation yesterday, had said a colleague confirmed the warehouse was theirs.
“I have been receiving so many calls to that effect. I called a colleague. He confirmed it to me. I think we are in another era of EndSARS,” he had said.
He later clarified that the looted warehouse did not belong to NEMA in a statement.
NEMA’s Director, Planning, Research and Forecasting, Onimode Bandele, also denied the warehouse belonged to NEMA. He described the incident as unfortunate.
“We woke up and got the same news. And because we needed to be sure of what we were doing, we had to drive to our warehouse, and when we got there, our own warehouse was intact.
“But to ensure we convince Nigerians that the warehouse is not that of NEMA, we had to drive down this way to see what happened.
“We were well informed this warehouse belongs to the FCT agriculture department, where grains were stored. It is rather an unfortunate incident.”
Also, he could not confirm if the bags of grains had an inscription of palliatives
“I was not here when the looting took place, nor was I here when the remnant was cleared. It is unfortunate. What I can say is that whether it is palliative or stored grains by the FCT, it is a great loss to Nigeria.
“Security is being put in place to secure our warehouses nationwide. We do not have palliatives. Security personnel had cordoned off the premises. Three suspects had been apprehended,” he said.
The attack of the storage facility was reminiscent of what happened during the EndSARS protest against police brutality, and the COVID-19 lockdown, when several warehouses belonging to the government across the country were invaded and looted by angry, hungry Nigerians.
Meanwhile, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command said it has arrested 15 suspects .
According to the FCT police command public relations officer Josephine Adeh, those arrested include  two local security guards employed by the warehouse management.
Items recovered from the suspects include 26 bags of maize, five Motorcycles and some vandalized aluminum roofings sheets.