The board of inquiry set up to investigate the circumstances that led to the killing of police operatives in Taraba state has identified lack of inter-agency cooperation as cause of the incident.
Acting Director Defence Information, Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja, said the seven-man panel had submitted its report to the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin.
Col. Nwachukwu said that Gen. Olonisakin has constituted the panel following the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari for an immediate investigation into the unfortunate incident that led to troops of the Nigerian Army on August 6 killing three police personnel and two civilians along the Ibi-Wukari Road in Taraba state.
He said that the board of inquiry led by Rear Admiral Ibikunle Olaiya, comprised one representative each from the defence headquarters, army, navy and the air force.
Other members, according to him, are the Defence Intelligence Agency, the police and Department of State Service (DSS).
He said that the incident gave rise to serious concern by the federal government, the military and police high command.
According to him, after a thorough and painstaking investigation into the incident, the board of inquiry in its report to the convening authority observed that there were infractions and poor communication between personnel of the police and troops of the army.
“It was also observed that there was non-adherence to the standard operating procedure by both parties involved in the incident.
“It further made some recommendations to the army and the police to forestall future reoccurrence and bring anyone culpable to book in accordance with extant laws.
“The board of inquiry also recommended that the army and police should further investigate Capt. Tijani Balarabe, Sgt. Ibrahim Mohammed, Cpl. Bartholomew Obanye, the Divisional Crime Officer (DCO), Ibi Police Division, ASP Aondoona Iorbee and Insp. Aliyu Dadje for complacency and necessary disciplinary measures.
“It was also recommended that further investigation be conducted on Hamisu Bala for gun running and possibly kidnapping, in order to prosecute the suspect,” he said.
The defence spokesperson added that the panel also recommended that the services and other security agencies establish an inter-agency liaison desk to include senior officers for timely resolution of future misdemeanour.
“The defence headquarters once again assures the public that the armed forces of Nigeria and other security agencies are working in synergy to tackle contemporary security challenges bedevilling the nation,” he added.