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12 Jul 2016

JUST IN: BENUE BIRS ARRESTS FOUR SUSPECTS IN CONNECTION WITH ILLEGAL CHECKPOINTS

By: Terna Francis 
It was a dark day for Ityo James, Angum Terhemba Henry, Japhet and Aule Terhemba who were arrested at Abintse and Igbor on 11th July, 2016.
Speaking to Journalists, one of the suspects Ityo James said he was employed by one Mr. Sir Kura of Makurdi town; to collect revenue at the checkpoint so as to aid him take care of his sick daughter and go back to school. When asked, he said he was connected to his boss through his friend; Mr. Tyom.
Mr. Ityo claimed he was instructed to collect revenue on all food items under produce. He added that the sum of N5,500 was charged for J-5 and N11,500 for bigger cars.
The second suspect, Angum Terhemba who confirmed that he was caught with illegal receipts denied prior knowledge that the checkpoint and receipts were illegal. According to him, he was just recruited four days ago and was still undergoing training. He however, contradicted himself by saying he was given a monthly target from the N2,000 per truck and N1,000 per J-5.
One of the suspects arrested at Igbor, Aule Terhemen claimed he is the Chairman of Gwer East Local Government Environmental Sanitation Taskforce and he had printed receipts of the illegal revenue item.
Reacting, the Executive Chairman of BIRS, Mrs. Mimi Adzape-Orubibi confirmed the arrest of the four suspects at Abintse and Igbor. She said she was informed that other members of the gang ran away and the hut where the suspects take refuge was burnt down as well as their other operational tools. She also warned other members of the public nursing the idea of operating illegal checkpoints to desist from it as more arrests and prosecutions will be made until illegal revenue checkpoints and receipts become history in Benue State.
Speaking further, Mrs. Orubibi said the arrest is an affirmation that the administration of Governor Samuel Ortom is not responsible for the illegal taxes imposed on the people but the handwork of criminal elements who don’t mean well for the state. According to the Chief Executive, “this is just the beginning.”
It would be recalled that Governor Samuel Ortom in one of his town-hall meetings recently, charged the Executive Chairman of BIRS to arrest and prosecute suspects in connection with illegal revenue checkpoints across the state and she swung into action by putting up an announcement on several media platforms on the intention of the Taskforce to commence full operations.
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Item Reviewed: JUST IN: BENUE BIRS ARRESTS FOUR SUSPECTS IN CONNECTION WITH ILLEGAL CHECKPOINTS Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Link Naija