Police authorities in Rivers State have denied having knowledge of any levy imposed in any community in Ahoada West local government Area of the state by suspected cult gang.
Grace Iringe-Koko, the spokesman of the command, said this on Sunday, after a stakeholder in the local government raised alarm that some criminal elements were demanding N10 million security levy in some communities in the area.
She urged stakeholders in the affected communities to make an official complaint to the police about the incident.
Part of the statement reads, “For now the Command is not aware of any levy on any community in Ahoada or any other community in Rivers State. If there is such a situation we expect the people or stakeholders in the area to make an official report in the Ahoada Division.
“They can even come to the command headquarters to come and report the situation because if they don’t report how will the police know what they claim is happening?
While speaking to newsmen under the condition of anonymously in Port Harcourt for fear of being traced, the stakeholder alleged that some communities in the local government area were already contributing N100,000 per household to make up the N10 million levy which they term ‘survival money.
He said the cult gangs in Ahoada West local government sent messages to various communities to pay the said sum or be ready for their actions on the day the Divisional Police Officer of Ahoada, SP Bako Angbashim was killed.
“The very day that they killed the DPO, the gangs in Ahoada West started sending messages to various communities to pay |N10 Million before the end of the month, or else they will come and raze down the entire community.
“They (communities) are now paying N100,000 for survival, and it is not good. There is even a report that the 2 Baba (Gift David) that they are chasing has left Ahoada East and is now in Ahoada West.
“Palliatives that were brought to us, they moved it and sent to these boys in their various hideouts. When we say we want to fight insecurity the government should be sincere about it.”
He also called on the state government and security agencies to take the fight against insecurity to Ahoada West, where he said the prime suspect may be hiding.
“The State Government, Nigeria Police and other relevant security agencies should come to Ahoada West and comb the area. 2 Baba is in Ahoada West. So they should stop looking far when the boy is close.
“He is in Ahoada West, he is no longer in Ahoada East. They should focus their searchlight on Ahoada West and help us. There was a time when the late Bako Angbashim came to Ahoada West and raided some communities, he arrested some of these boys. Immediately they sent messages across to him that Ahoada West was not his jurisdiction; that he should not come there.”