UPDATE: The Nigeria Police has in a statement confirmed that 30 suspects in its detention were freed by gunmen who attacked the premises of Special Anti-robbery Squad, Abuja on early on Monday morning.
The full statement reads:
“In the early hours of today, 26th November, 2012, at about 2am, unknown gunmen in large number attacked the premises of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Federal Territory Police Command.
“Policemen on duty responded swiftly and engaged the gunmen in a gun battle that lasted for some minutes, at the end of which the gunmen were successfully repelled.
“However, in the confusion that ensued, about 30 suspects in the detention facilities of SARS broke out of the cells and attempted to escape.
“Tactical and coordinated efforts to re-arrest the fleeing suspects yielded instant result. So far, twenty five (25) of the suspects have been re-arrested, while five (5) suspects originally being held in relation to robbery related offences are currently at large.
“It needs to be emphasized here that no suspect held for terror related charges, escaped from SARS detention facilities. No explosive or IED-related materials were used in the botched attack.
“Meanwhile, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP MD Abubakar, CFR, NPM, mni has personally visited the scene of the incident to assess the situation.
“ He has equally ordered a high-powered investigative panel headed by a Senior Police Officer to investigate the circumstances surrounding the incidence.
“Similarly, the IGP has ordered water-tight security around all government and Police related facilities nationwide.
The Police High Command uses this medium to appeal to Nigerians for calm while reassuring them of the Force preparedness to perform its constitutional and statutory responsibilities of providing adequate security for the State and the entire citizenry.
“The Force therefore, enjoins the public to continue to go about their lawful duty without fear or intimidation as adequate strategies have been put in place to guarantee the general security and safety of all Nigerians”, MBA concluded in the statement.
The group said it has put its house in order.
Gunmen, early Monday, attacked the headquarters of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, in Abuja leading to a shoot-out for many hours.
The men are believed to be members of the Boko Haram who attempted to free their members being held by the police.
PREMIUM TIMES learnt that the attack was repelled by the police. No casualty has been reported
This daring attack is coming less than 24 hours after suspected Boko Haram members detonated explosives at a church in a major military training compound in Jaji, Kaduna State.
A man, who claimed to be a senior member of the sect told PREMIUM TIMES, Monday, that “we (the group) have put our house in order and Nigerians have not seen anything yet.”
Police Force spokesperson, Frank Mba, could not be reached for comment.
Security operatives have already cordoned the Apo area of Abuja where the attack occured. A manhunt is already being carried out to locate the attackers who may still be in the area according to security sources.
The security forces last week declared the leaders of the sect wanted, placing a bounty on them.