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Outrage As Taraba Governor, Kefas Agbu Appoints Kidnapping, Murder Suspect As Aide

There is outrage in Taraba State, following Governor Kefas Agbu’s appointment into the cabinet of one Shiban Tikari, who is currently wanted for alleged kidnapping and murder of a state House of Assembly member, Hosea Ibi.

Tikari, who had served as the Chairman of Takum Local Council, was allegedly implicated in the kidnap and subsequent murder of late Ibi, who was then the member representing Takum 1, in the Taraba State House of Assembly.

Ibi, while serving as a state lawmaker, was kidnapped and gruesomely murdered on December 30, 2017, sparking statewide condemnation. Some persons who were later arrested in connection to the crime, reportedly implicated the then council chairman, Tikari.

A list of 134 appointees signed by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Gebon Timothy Kataps, indicates that Tikari and others would serve in various capacities, ranging from Special Advisers to chairmen of agencies of government.

However, the inclusion of Tikari, who has been at large over his alleged involvement in the murder of former Taraba State lawmaker, has sparked outrage in the state, with many accusing Governor Agbu of accommodating suspects in his government and aiding them to evade justice.

The late Ibi was abducted at gunpoint in Takum and was later killed. 

Recently, the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Joel Filibus Agya, had lambasted the police for failing to arrest and prosecute Tikari.

Responding on April 25, 2024, the Taraba State Commissioner of Police, David Iloyanmon, while briefing journalists, had noted that the police were on the trail of Tikari after the Chief Judge of the state, declared him wanted.

“We are looking for him. We recently gathered that he has left the state, we have been trying to arrest him for possible prosecution, anywhere he is, we must get him arrested, it’s just a matter of time,” the police commissioner had said.

When contacted on the matter, the Commissioner of Information, Zainab Jalingo who confirmed the appointment, however said his candidacy had just been withdrawn pending final court judgment on his trial.

“That appointment was done for all former council chairmen in Taraba, which the former council chairman of Takum happens to be one of them; but where there’s a questionable issue with regards to his integrity or there’s a court order involving arraignment, his appointment is silent for now until and unless the matter is put to rest by the court,” Jalingo said.

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