By Adetokunbo FAKEYE
The Nigerian Army has said that one Samuel Christopher, allegedly impersonating the office of a Brigadier General, is on the run.
Lieutenant Ayodeji Owoyomi, who spoke on behalf of the Commander, 81 Division Provost Group, Brigadier General Mohammed Abubakar of 81, Division, Victoria Island, Lagos, disclosed this while speaking with journalists on Monday during the parade of some other suspects impersonating the force, said that the suspected fake general had not been forthcoming despite several invitations.
According to Owoyomi, "Samuel was arrested on February 22, 2023, around 5:30pm, at Tinkan Command Longroom Apapa, Lagos. He was later released on bail and asked to turn himself in.
"Preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect had been parading himself as a Brigadier General, Colonel, Defense Attaché to France, Retired Chief of Military Intelligence Personnel, depending on the circumstances.
"Mr Samuel was arrested in company of one Headquarters Nigerian Army Band Corp NABC Coaster Bus conveying 11 personnel, two Civil vehicles conveying two Air Force personnel as escort and two NA personnel drivers. It was further revealed that the impostor had on regular basis employed the services of military personnel and was in possession of fake Ministry of Defence Identity Card".
The army warned the public against dealing with the suspect as he was not a military personnel.
Some of the vehicles seized from the suspect were seen at the car park of the army.
However, the army paraded other six suspects arrested for impersonating the military. They are Abdullhakeem Mohammed, Babale Salisu, Christopher Francis, Vivian Titus, Jude Nwanosike and Dennis Embeleakpo.
The statement by the army noted that one of them, Salisu, was a dismissed personnel of the force.
"He was arrested on October 26, 2021, for impersonation at ABC building Broad Street, Lagos Island, while trying to forcefully eject occupants of ABC Building. He was however dressed Nigerian Armed Forces Woodland Camouflage Uniform", the statement stated.
One of the suspects, a female, Vivian, according to Owoyomi was arrested on May 20, 2023, at Agip gate, Nigerian Army Cantonment Ojo Mammy Market following a tip off.
"She dressed in the Nigerian military woodland camouflage shirt and was in possession of fake ID Card number 09NA/63/1988, Corporal rank.
"Additionally, she has different pictures where she dressed in military uniform on her mobile phone", the statement added.
Owoyomi said further that Vivian was an unrepentant impostor who had been arrested severally by the military police. She recently handed to the Lagos Commissioner of Police on January 5, 2023.
"It is a serious issue for us in the army. We keep arresting civilians and we keep handing them over to the police. How they get out of there so easily is what we cannot say", he added.