A notorious trans-border arms dealer, Ojomo Adebowale Gbenga, has said that he sold six AK-47 rifles to the wanted kidnap kingpin, Hamisu Bala, popularly called Wadume.
Wadume was allegedly released on the orders of an Army Captain in Taraba state last week. Three policemen were killed by soldiers during the incident.
Ajomo was arrested in May 2019, by operatives of the Inspector General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team (IRT) for supplying heavy arms and ammunition to kidnappers and armed robbers.
According to Vanguard, Ojomo, 45, and major arms dealer in the South-Western part of the country, made startling revelations about the fleeing Wadume during an interview.
Ojomo, who was earlier in the year paraded by police authorities over his criminal activities and later detained in Lagos, said he met Wadume four years ago in Benue state and had been selling arms to him under the guise of using them to fight "terrorist" Fulanis.
Ojomo said that that he got to know Wadume through his business partner, Moses in Benue state, and he told him that he needed rifles to fight herdsmen who were killing farmers in his community.
The gun runner further explained that he got all the rifles, which he sold to Wadume and his friends from Burkina Faso, Mali and Libya and he said he sold the arms to them "because they told him that they were having community clashes".
“I started selling fire arms since 1993 after my secondary school. I worked with a company that deals on licensed arms in 1993 and I left in 1996 and went to school but, I linked up with arms dealers in Ibadan, which is the headquarters of arms dealing in the south western part of the country," Ojomo said according to Vanguard.
"I started selling automatic firearms which is prohibited, then one of my friends who is now late, Moses led me to the north. He took me to Benue state and I sold arms to several people, including Alhaji Hamisu (Wadume). He came to me through Moses’ contacts and they identified him as a don.
"You know arms dealing is a cartel business. I knew very little about him and I sold eight rifles to him in 2015 and in January 2019, he called again and told me that he needed 10 rifles, but I had only six and because he was in hurry, I sold them to him at N800,000 each, and the bullets for N350,000 per can. But after my arrest, I gave information about him to the police. It was while in detention I heard he has been arrested," he added.
Meanwhile, investigations into the killing of three policemen and mysterious escape of Wadume has revealed that the Army captain allegedly had 191 phone conversations with the kidnap kingpin in less than one month.