Army announces arrest of General’s suspected killer, 3 years after claiming killers were nabbed

Late General Mohammed Shuwa Photo credit: Namibian Sun

The Nigerian military on Monday said it arrested a man suspected to have murdered the pioneer General Officer Commanding of the Army’s First Division, General Mohammed Shuwa (rtd).

The spokesperson for the Army, Sani Usman, said the suspect was arrested in Kano by officials of the Nigerian military intelligence.

Mr. Usman, a colonel, did not provide details about the identity of the suspect. He only said he would be paraded in Kano where he was arrested.

The army spokesperson also did not comment on a separate group of suspects the army earlier said it arrested in connection with the killing, and whether this new suspect has any relationship with those earlier ones.

The Joint Task Force (JTF) on Operation Restore Order in Borno State had on May 6, 2013 claimed it arrested the suspected killers of the general in Maiduguri.

The spokesman for the JTF at the time, Sagir Musa, said in a statement that the arrest followed series of investigations by the task force.

“It will be recalled that an elder statesman, retired Maj.-Gen. Mohammadu Shuwa, was shot dead by gunmen in front of his house in Gwange, Maiduguri on November 12, 2012.

“Preliminary investigation by the JTF has identified two key suspected Boko Haram terrorists: Mohammed Ibn Saleh and Abdulkareem Ibrahim, as the masterminds of the killing,” Mr. Musa had said.

He added that a special operation was carried out by the JTF to get the suspected killers.

“Consequently, a special operation was conducted on November 15, 2012 by the task force with a view to arresting the culprits, which led to the death of Ibn Saleh during a shootout in a house at Bulabulin Ngarnam.

“Similarly, on December 2, 2012, Abdulkareem was arrested with a fatal injury that resulted in his death on December 6, 2012. A member of the syndicate, one Bulama Bur died on December 2, 2012 in an encounter with JTF troops,” Mr. Sagir said at the time.

He said the JTF also arrested four other members of the gang.

He said one of those arrested was “actively involved in the planning and execution of the plan that led to the killing of Shuwa, while the two others played various indirect roles”.

The army provided no updates on the arrested suspects since then, and PREMIUM TIMES was unaware that they were ever charged to court.

Mr. Shuwa was murdered on November 2, 2012 in his residence in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, by gunmen thought to be members of the terrorist Boko Haram sect.

The deadly sect later denied responsibility for the killing.

Witnesses had told PREMIUM TIMES at the time that the Nigerian civil war veteran was shot multiple times in front of his home at the lower Gwange area of the troubled city.

Mr. Shuwa was, at the time, among residents who declined to vacate their homes following persistent violence around their neighbourhoods.

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