56 suspected cultists apprehended with human skulls in Cross River

Fifty-six suspected cultists have been arrested with human skulls in Calabar and Ogoja, Cross River State.

Fifty-one suspects, who were intercepted at the 8 Miles area of Calabar on their way to Akwa Ibom State, were paraded on Wednesday by the Cross River State Commissioner of Police, Abdulkadir Jimoh.

According to him, the suspects, comprising 46 males and five females, were arrested with three human skulls on Monday, August 17, 2020

Jimoh said, “On Monday, I got information that suspected cultists were driving dangerously, hoisting the black and red flags, and disturbing the peace on the Goodluck Jonathan Road, and driving towards 8 Miles. They were seriously pursued and intercepted at 8 Miles.

“When they were arrested and brought to the headquarters, there were 51 of them. Forty-six are males and five are females. The suspects confessed to be cultists from the Akpabuyo Local Government Area and were on their way to Akwa Ibom State. And when they were searched, three fresh human skulls were recovered from their masquerade regalia

One of the suspects, Mike Asuquo, described the items recovered from them as part masquerade regalia.

“I was born to see the regalia from our great-grandparents. I don’t know anything about the human skulls. We took this masquerade regalia from our community town hall. We rented it from the owner. The masquerade is a tradition of the Efik. We went for a burial at Obot Akara in Akwa Ibom State,” he stated.

The four suspected members of the Vikings Confraternity were arrested on Sunday and were identified as Peter Henry, Thomas Etta, Ekpo Felix and Ndifreke Obot

In a related development, five suspected cultists were arrested with a human skull by the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps in Cross River State.

The state Commandant, NSCDC, Mr Danjuma Elisha, while parading the suspects on Wednesday in Calabar, said they were nabbed on Tuesday in the Ogoja Local Government Area of the state.

According to him, the suspects were arrested following a tip-off that suspected cultists from rival groups had a confrontation.

He stated, “On August 18, 2020, our attention was drawn to a cult confrontation at No. 50 Mission Road, Igoli, Ogoja.

“Upon arrival at the scene, our men found a human skull and other bones believed to be human bones. The team decided to swiftly pick the items and the persons found within the vicinity for scrutiny.

“Ten persons were picked up and after interrogation, five were identified as having questions to answer in relation to the items found.”

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