Christmas Day Catholic Church Bomber, Kabiru Sokoto Hospitalized

Kabiru Sokoto
The prime suspect in the December 25, 2011, bombing of St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, Madalla, near Abuja, Kabiru Sokoto, is receiving treatment at the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital (AUTH), Gwagwalada, LEADERSHIP SUNDAY can reveal.

Sources at the hospital told LEADERSHIP SUNDAY that the suspect was brought to the hospital unconscious by some soldiers.

Islamist sect Boko Haram had claimed responsibility for the December 25 church bombing that claimed scores of lives. Kabiru Sokoto, the prime suspect, was arrested by security operatives, but he escaped from custody and was later rearrested in Jalingo, the capital of Taraba State.

Born on May 9, 1983, to the family of Umaru Jabbi of Gagi village, Sokoto South local government area of Sokoto State, Kabiru was instrumental in the visit of the late national leader of Boko Haram, Mohammed Yusuf, to Gagi village in February 2009, during which Kabiru was declared leader of the sect in Sokoto State.

At the AUTH yesterday, security was beefed up, especially at the casualty ward where Kabiru was on admission. Our correspondent who was at the hospital reported that no fewer than 15 fully armed mobile policemen kept vigil at the hospital ward, while plain-clothes security men patrolled the hospital premises.

Kabiru had his legs chained to the bed. The entrance of the ward was locked against visitors.

A source in the hospital who spoke to our correspondent said: “Policemen brought in two persons today, one armed robber and one Boko Haram suspect. That is the reason for heavy presence of security in the hospital.”

Attempts by our correspondent to confirm from the chief medical director (CMD) of the hospital, Dr. Peter Alabi, the reason Kabiru Sokoto was on admission in the hospital was not successful. He said he was out of town.

The CMD, however, maintained that he was not aware that the suspect was brought to the hospital, adding that he would get the details today.

None of the doctors or nurses on duty was willing to speak. The administrative block of the hospital was deserted and no staff member was seen around.

However, when LEADERSHIP SUNDAY contacted the spokesperson of the State Security Service, SSS, Ms. Marilyn Ogar, to confirm the story, she denied knowledge of the incident.

Ogar, who queried where LEADERSHIP SUNDAY got the information, said she was sure the information did not emanate from the SSS.

“I don’t know where you got that information from. I am sure that information is not from the State Security Service. Whoever is giving you that information, you should go and meet that person for confirmation. I don’t have any idea of what you are talking about, sir.” She said.

Prodded further to confirm if Kabiru Sokoto was still alive, she said, “I say I don’t have any information of what you are talking about, sir. Thank you.’

Culled from a Nigerian newspaper, Leadership

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