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General Alkali’s killers must be found - Daily Trust

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The recovery by the Nigerian Army on Wednesday last week of the remains of retired Major General Idris Alkali, former Head of Administration at Army Headquarters, brought to an end the mystery that surrounded his disappearance without trace. His remains were found in a sack laden with heavy stones in an abandoned well in Guchwet village, Shen district of Jos South LGA, Plateau State. Guchwet is 10 kilometers away from Dura-Du where the army had, a week earlier, found a shallow grave in which the General was buried but was later exhumed.

The shocking discovery was announced in Jos, 58 days after General Alkali went missing, by Garrison Commander 3 Armoured Division, Maxwell Kobe Cantonment, Rukuba, Jos Brigadier-General Umar Muhammad, who led the search and rescue team. He said, “The Nigerian Army gave us three tasks. One is to find General Alkali dead or alive. Two, find his car which is a Toyota Corolla and three, if anything happened to him, find who were responsible for it.” He said one of the suspects on the police wanted list submitted himself for interrogation and led the team to the location. The army drained the abandoned well and recovered the late General’s remains.


Gen. Muhammad further said, “Two aspects of the assignment have been completed. The remaining aspect is for all those who took part in this heinous act, no matter how highly connected, must not go unpunished.” He said the search and rescue operation was conducted by the Army in collaboration with the Police and Fire Service. He also said six of the wanted suspects are presently in police custody. He urged others who have not submitted themselves to do so as the army is on their trail. General Alkali was buried in Abuja on Saturday according to Islamic rites, after funeral prayers at the National Mosque.

The General first went missing on September 3 while traveling from Abuja to Bauchi via Jos. The army swung into action on September 22 after his whereabouts could not be ascertained by his family. Alkali’s vehicle with registration number Kwara MUN 670 AA was recovered from an old mining pond in Dura-Du on September 29. Two other cars were also recovered from the same pond. While the Toyota Hiace bus which was recovered from the pond belonged to Abdullahi Abdullahi who went missing on June 24, this year, the red Rover car with Bauchi registration number AG 645 TRR was owned by Alhaji Lawal Isa, who was allegedly killed along with his friend Alhaji Danteni in Dura-Du in 2013.


The absolute silence maintained by Berom community leaders in Plateau State over these shocking recoveries is far from being golden. We condemn their silence as ominous and regrettable.  It lends credence to the GOC 3 Armoured Division Major General Benson Akinruloyo’s declaration that “the killing of General Alkali was a crime committed by a few but concealed and sponsored by the community.” The least we expect from the community leaders when these heinous crimes were revealed was to disown and condemn it. Their disgraceful inaction reflects the extent to which hatred and intolerance have pitched one section of the country against another along religious and ethnic lines.

The inability of the police to uncover the wicked use into which Dura-Du community youths subjected a pond since 2013 depicts inexcusable failure of intelligence. Department of State Services [DSS] should ideally have its unnoticed presence in all Nigerian communities. General Alkali’s case was solved only because the victim was an Army General. Many other innocent travelers were profiled and killed in Dura-Du over the years without detection.

We commend the army for its doggedness and for collaborating with the police to get to the root of this case. This is the kind of determination that ideally should characterize investigation into every murder case in all parts Nigeria. We urge the Army and police not to relent until Alkali’s killers and all their collaborators are brought to book for their evil deeds.

Daily Trust

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