Investigation Update: No Murder Case Found Against Cleric and Police Operatives

Investigation into Ogbolokposu Community Incident

The Cross River State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has delivered its verdict, affirming the election of Governor Bassey Otu from the All Progressives Congress (APC).

This decision comes after a petition was filed by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and its gubernatorial candidate, Prof. Sandy Onor, contesting the outcome of the March 18 gubernatorial election.

Police Statement on Misleading Narrative

In response to a misleading narrative circulating on social media, the Delta State Police Command issued a statement confirming that there is no “prima facie case” of murder against the accused parties in the case of two young men, Charles Okpako and Ejiro Ekeipovwe, who were allegedly killed on July 12, 2023.

Background to the Case

The case stems from a report made on July 14, 2022, by individuals who alleged that the accused, including a cleric and two police operatives, were involved in the shooting and killing of the aforementioned individuals.

The case was subsequently transferred to the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) for a thorough investigation.

Investigation Findings

During the course of the investigation, several key findings emerged:

  1. The tricycle rider, a victim, claimed to have been shot by police officers on escort duty but could not identify the officers involved.
  2. An eyewitness, Festus Ebereri, who claimed to have been present during the incident, could not identify the vehicle used by the cleric or the police officer he accused of pulling the trigger. Additionally, this officer was confirmed to be on another assignment at the time of the incident.
  3. Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) footage showed that the cleric, Apostle Michael Akpor, had been present at a church premises from noon to 9 p.m. on the day in question.

Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) Review

Upon the completion of the investigation, a duplicate case file was submitted to the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) for their assessment.

The DPP, after a thorough review, concluded that there is no “prima facie” case of murder against Apostle Michael Akpor, Insp. Ignatius Aghazie, and ASP Mesoro Victor.

Police Commissioner’s Response and Warning

The Commissioner of Police, Delta State, CP. Wale Abass, expressed condolences to the families of the deceased and assured a comprehensive investigation into their deaths.

He also warned against cyberstalking, emphasizing that it is a violation of the Cyber Crime Act of 2015. Those engaging in such activities, especially media personalities, bloggers, and social media influencers, could face arrest and prosecution.

Appeal for Information

The CP urged the public to remain calm and encouraged anyone with relevant information to assist in the investigative process to come forward.

Information can be shared anonymously through the command’s social media handles or dedicated phone lines for prompt response.

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