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Four arrested for extorting fisherman in Akwa Ibom

Four individuals, thought to be Akwa Ibom State Ministry of Transportation personnel or their agents, were arrested by youths in Ibaka Mbo local government area for “illegally extorting” cash from unwary fisherman under bogus names.Information Guide Nigeria

The accused were apprehended last week and handed over to the Nigerian Navy, who then turned them over to police in Enwang, Mbo LGA, for further questioning.

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Human Rights lawyer and counsel for the fishermen in Ibaka, Barrister Oluwajuwon Ogunbiyi, who confirmed the arrest in a statement in Uyo on Monday, said that the suspects carry out their nefarious trade by disguising as security agents under the name ‘Government of Akwa Ibom State (Marine Safety, Security, Revenue Surveillance and Enforcement on Water ways/ Water Fronts)’ with which they used to fleece the fishermen of their hard-earned resources.

Ogunbiyi voiced disappointment that, rather than addressing insecurity in riverine areas, the state administration was reportedly encouraging law and order breakdown by using thugs to “illegally tax poor fishermen” in the state.JAMB portal

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He went on to say that, despite his entreaties, the state governor, Udom Emmanuel, had failed to address the mounting insecurity in riverine villages.

He said, “Four men who disguised themselves like security agents and claimed to be engaged by the Ministry of Transport of Akwa Ibom State were apprehended by youths of Ibaka community in Mbo L.G.A where they have been extorting fishermen in the area.

“The suspects were handed over by the youths to the Nigerian Navy who eventually handed them over to Nigeria Police at Enwang.NYSC portal

“The Government of Akwa Ibom State is encouraging the break down of law and order by employing touts, renegades, and unscrupulous elements in a bid to illegally tax poor fishermen who are currently battling with the terrors being unleashed on them everyday by sea pirates at the sea.

“The Governor has failed to address the issue of insecurity along Akwa Ibom waterways despite all entreaties to him. It is just as if the people have been left to bear the brunt of this malaise alone.

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer of the Akwa Ibom State command , Odiko Macdon, said he wa yet to be briefed on the development, adding however that he would make inquiry from Monday (today) on the matter.

He said, “We don’t have any such information at our disposal yet, but I will try and find out. I don’t want to respond to an issue that I don’t have information about.”JAMB Result

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Emediong Ekpe

Emediong Ekpe is a graduate of English. A professional Sports journalist/analyst, and a spoken word artist. He is passionate about decimating information and putting smiles on people's faces via news writing.

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