Six suspects have been arrested in connection with an attempt to steal train coaches in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
According to the Commissioner of Police (CP) in the state, Yusufu Mohammed, the suspects were arrested after a tip-off from residents of Bayan quarters, the headquarters of the railway station.
Speaking exclusively to Channels TV, CP Mohammed said a mastermind claiming to be a staff of a railway corporation in Bauchi State loaded two coaches in a trailer to be transported to Jos but was halted by police personnel.
According to the CP, the suspect claimed to be working on an agreement signed between the Plateau State Government and the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) on intra-state transportation services. Still, on interrogation, it was discovered the suspect lied.
The CP told our correspondent that the coaches were headed for Jos and six of the arrested suspects were already in the custody of the Borno Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) for attempting to transport the coaches out of Borno.
Meanwhile, the NRC has said that there was no attempt to steal some of its train coaches in Maiduguri.
NRC Managing Director, Fidel Okhiria, made this known in a statement on Saturday.
The NRC boss said contrary to online reports, the coaches in viral videos were being moved to Jos in Plateau State to be overhauled.
“NRC management wishes to clarify this erroneous reportage by stating that the said coaches are officially being moved to NRC Running Shed Jos, Plateau State to be overhauled and putting them back to operation.
“NRC is trying to extend Rail Mass Transit all over the country,” the statement partly read.