Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, has denied having any connection with the robbery that took place in Offa, a town in Kwara State.
Earlier on Sunday, the police had summoned Saraki after some of the suspects who confessed to the crime, had indicted him.
Five gang leaders had claimed that they were political thugs of the Senate President and the Governor of Kwara State, Abdulfatah Ahmed, hence the invite.
But in a statement released hours later by his Special Adviser (Media and Publicity) Yusuph Olaniyonu, the Senate President described the allegations as “baseless” and “another ploy by the Police to implicate him by all means”.
According to him, when the incident happened, he was the first top public official to pay a visit to the place after which he also put a call through to the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, to make the necessary security arrangements.
He said, “Let it be known that there is no way I could have been associated with armed robbery against my people. When the Offa robbery incident happened, I was the first top public official to pay a visit to the place and right there in the palace of the traditional ruler, I put a call through to this same Mr Ibrahim Idris, the IGP, requesting him to make certain specific security arrangements as demanded by the people.
“Members of the public will remember that on May 16, 2018, I alerted the Senate about the information passed on to me by my State Governor, Dr. Abdulfatai Ahmed, over a plot by the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, to frame me up by getting some suspected cultists arrested in Ilorin to implicate me.
“It is believed that the timely leakage of the plot, in that case, aborted the use of the suspected cultists to implicate me. Now, it is the Offa bank robbery suspects that are about to be used”.
Speaking further, Saraki said the development was part of plans to embarrass him after the IGP had failed to honour invitations by the National Assembly over the killings across the country.
He, however, insisted that he had no hand in the case but will honour the police invitation when it is formally extended to him.
“This plot is concocted to embarrass me and, in the mind of the IGP, it is his own response after his refusal to honour the invitation by the National Assembly, headed by me, for him to come and offer explanations on the rampant killings and violence across the country.
“Like the earlier one, this frame-up will also fail as I hereby state categorically that I have no link with any band of criminals.
“As a person who has utmost respect for the rule of law and all constitutional institutions, when the invitation from the Police is formally extended to me, I will be ready to honour it without any delay.
“It is however sad that this abuse of the criminal investigation process aimed at intimidating and over-overawing the legislature, thereby obstructing it from doing its work, is a big threat to our democracy,” the Senate President stated.
Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, who was also named by the police as being involved in the incident, has denied sponsoring, funding and supporting political thuggery.