Balarabe while speaking before the Joint Investigation Panel revealed that he used a spoon to open the handcuffs of the suspect.
The committee was set up to investigate the killing of three police officers and two civilians on Ibbi-Takum Road, in Taraba State, on August 6, 2019.
Recall that the police officers were attacked by men attached to Battalion 93 commanded by Balarabe.
Balarabe while stating the part he played noted that after the police officers had been attacked, Wadume was taken to the army camp where his handcuffs were removed.
The captain said, “The guard commander of Gidan Waya told me that the locals arrested one of the suspects and he was with him at the checkpoint and he was having a police ID card; the suspect said he was a policeman from Abuja.”
“Lt Yushau Saad brought him from Gidan Waya with the ID card. I interviewed him and he said they were sent from Abuja to arrest the Alhaji (Wadume). We moved the injured (policemen) to the hospital and the DCO Wukari (ASP Aondona Iorbee) confirmed that they are policemen.”
“When I arrived at the camp, my soldiers and ASP Iorbee and a civilian were removing handcuffs from the Alhaji (Wadume). I entered my kitchen and picked a spoon to join them in removing the handcuffs.”
Balarabe further stated that after the handcuffs were removed he left Wadume and his two sisters in his living room, while he went to Ibbi town with Lt. Saad to retrieve some rifles belonging to the IRT policemen.
On returning, he said Wadume had disappeared, and when contacted on phone, he claimed he was receiving treatment at an undisclosed clinic.
“Before I left for town, Hamisu and his two sisters were in our parlour; I came back to the camp and could not find Hamisu. I asked my CSM as the next person (officer) to me in the camp, he said he didn’t know when he went out.”
“I called Alhaji (Hamisu) and he said he was on a drip at a clinic. I went to the clinic, he was not there. I called him again but he had switched off his phone. All efforts to trace Alhaji proved abortive,” Balarabe narrated.
The captain while speaking on the relationship between the suspected kidnapper and officials in Taraba State revealed that he got the number of the state Commissioner of Police from Wadume, stressing that the two men were good friends.
He noted, “I got the number of the commissioner of police from Hamisu because they are good friends. He called the CP before he asked me to call him in respect of a case of Fulani and Jukun.”
The captain admitted that he asked Iorbee to switch off his phone “so that the military police can’t get him on the phone.”
Wadume had identified Balarabe and nine other soldiers as his accomplices. They are Staff Sgt. David Isaiah; Sgt. Ibrahim Mohammed; Corporal Bartholomew Obanye; Private Mohammed Nura; Lance Corporal Okorozie Gideon; Corporal Markus Michael; L/Corporal Nvenaweimoeimi Akpagra; Staff Sgt. Abdullahi Adamu, and Private Ebele Emmanuel.
But the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, and the military authorities have been shielding them from criminal prosecution.