…Cult gangs instil fear in Lagos, Ogun communities   Several cult gangs who use cutlasses, axe and assault rifles to instil fear in local communities in Lagos and Ogun states have continued a reign of terror in both states. The situation is now worsened by hunger occasioned by government’s stay-at-home directive. The Federal Government had […]

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  • …Cult gangs instil fear in Lagos, Ogun communities

 

Several cult gangs who use cutlasses, axe and assault rifles to instil fear in local communities in Lagos and Ogun states have continued a reign of terror in both states.

The situation is now worsened by hunger occasioned by government’s stay-at-home directive.

The Federal Government had extended the 14-day Stay-at-home order by another 14 to enable health workers check the spread of COVID 19 pandemic.Armed hoodlums have seized the opportunity to attack innocent members of the public and dispossessing them of their valuables.

From Abule-Egba to Epe, Ikorodu and Badagry, the situation is the same. This has created tension in border communities in both states and has gradually spread to other parts of Lagos.

The Baale of Abule-Egba, Alhaji Rauf Elegbede, said the weaponry the gang used was like “something out of a film”.

He said most of the attacks carried out by the gangs which also include the Awawa boys, One million boys, Eiye and Aiye confraternity, have left a trail of blood.

“We have not slept for two weeks. We know that the police would not be able to contain the raids by these criminals so we have resorted to self help. We have formed emergency vigilance groups in our areas. Our local masquerade ‘Oro’ is also involved in the patrol of our community,” he said.

At Ijanikin, Ajangbadi, Ojo and Badagry, the fear of a possible attack has crippled human activities as residents have started contracting the help of private security firm to help secure their community.

A three-man armed robbery gang, who are also members of Eiye, were nabbed by residents with the help of the police when their gang shot a man at Okokomaiko and attempted to rob him of N1.5m. The victim, who owners a bakery, was trailed by the gang to Agbara where he had gone to withdraw the cash from different banks.

While Lagosians were still grappling with the news of the attack on the bakery owner, another set of cult gang attacked a community in Mushin.

The gang, according to residents trailed a victim from his place of work at Abolarin Mushin to his house at Sadiku Street, Mushin.

“As the victim was opening his entrance gate, the robbers attacked him at gun point and dispossessed him of his bag containing N400, 000.00.

“The victim raised an alarm which attracted the vigilante set up by the community.

However, in a bid to clamp down on the rampaging robbers, detectives from the State Command at the instance of the State Commissioner of Police Hakeem Odumosu, swooped on notorious hideouts, arresting a total of 36 persons.

Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, BalaElkana, who confirmed various attacks by hoodlums, said detectives from the command foiled robbery attempts in communities under Ogun State and they have deployed Special Strike Force on Social Miscreants and tactical teams to different parts of Lagos State to tackle the menace of social miscreants.

He said patrolshave been intensified around markets and stores to prevent hoodlums from stealing and looting. Patrol teams have equally been deployed to various communities and streets.

It would be recalled that the Inspector General of Police IGP Mohammed Adamu Abubakar, deployed a Deputy Inspector General (DIG), Peter Babatunde Ogunyanwo, to Lagos for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation in Lagos and Ogun as well as to coordinate the ongoing onslaught launched against criminal elements.

The IGP also deployed Special Forces to support the tactical units initially deployed by the Commissioner of Police Lagos State,Hakeem Odumosu.The Special Forces have been deployed to Igando, Idimu, Ikotun, Agege, Dopemu, Abattoir, Mangoro, Alakuku, and other parts of Lagos State to provide round the clock patrols.

Odumosu said the teams have clear instruction to deal decisively with criminal elements operating under whatever guise, in accordance with the law.

In Ogun State, suspected armed robbers have in the last one week terrorised and robbed residents of valuables in about six communities in Ifo and Ado-Odo Ota Local Government Areas.

Daily Trust Saturday gathered that the hoodlums, numbering about 15, operated intermittently between penultimate Thursday evening and Saturday. They stormed the area, shooting sporadically into the air to scare away the residents.

The hoodlums also reportedly broke into shops and carted away goods worth millions of naira in an operation which lasted for several hours.

Some of the communities affected are Owode, Ilepa, Ifo, Arigbajo, Itori, Dalemo, IjokoJoju, Sango-Ota, Agbado-Ijaiye, all in Ifo and Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Areas of the state.

An eyewitness, Mr AjibabiAdetunji, who said the gunmen have been attacking about five communities in the area for about three days, noted that the affected communities were attacked in broadly light.

Residents of the affected areas and Abeokuta metropolis now keep vigil as part of self-help to prevent the attacks.

Findings revealed that community leaders, landlords and tenants have formed a vigilante group of sorts in each community to keep night watch daily to guard against robbery. Insiders told our correspondent that every adult male in each household partakes in the night watch, usually between 11pm to 3am.

Following an upsurge in crime in the area, operatives of the Ogun State Police Command swooped on the communities, arresting more than 150 suspects in connection with the alleged robberies and cultism in the affected areas.

The Commissioner of Police Kenneth Ebrimson however refuted the report that armed robbers had taken over some parts of Ifo and Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Areas of the state.

The Police boss said it was a case of cult clashes among seven rival groups within the areas as a result of the killing of one of them. The cult groups include Ilena boys; Federal boys; Lemon boys; Base boys; Sahara boys; Gbese boys and Marindoti boys.

Ebrimson who said that the command deployed men from Special Anti-Robbery Squad; Anti-Cultism unit, Anti-Kidnapping unit; Special forces and conventional policemen, explained that his men smoked the suspected criminals out of their hideouts and recovered various weapons.

All the suspects were on Thursday arraigned before Magistrate Courts in Abeokuta.

In Kaduna, while many residents were locked up in their homes, others decided to take advantage of the curfew to engage in kidnapping and other nefarious activities.

Our correspondent reports that between 7th to 14th April, 2020 when the state was under lockdown over the coronavirus pandemic, a total of 34 people were kidnapped, while five persons lost his lives.

The most recent attack was the abduction of three nursing mothers by bandits at Karaukarau village, Giwa Local Government Area on Tuesday April 14 during a wedding ceremony in the area.

The bandits, Daily Trust Saturday gathered attempted to abduct 13 women, but the villagers attack them and were able to rescue 10 out of the 13 initially abducted.

One person has been reportedly killed while 15 others were kidnapped, including three members of the same family who were heading for a burial at BirninGwari, in Kaduna State by bandits.

The incident which occurred on April 8, took place at UnguwanYaku, a notorious spot used by bandits to launch attacks on motorists along the Kaduna-BirninGwari highway.

Another nine persons including a Police Inspector identified as Gloria Sebastine, one Ahaji Usman and seven other members of his family were kidnapped on April 9 by unknown gunmen in UnguwanMa’aji area, New Millennium City, Kaduna.

Two days after the first attack at UnguwanMa’aji community, a similar incident took place on Friday where a Kaduna Polytechnic lecturer identified as Tijjani and two others were kidnapped in the area.

Daily Trust gathered from sources in the area that the kidnappers have demanded for N100m ransom for the Police Inspector and N10m for the lecturer.

The state’s police Public Relations Officer, ASP Mohammed Jalige, when contacted said the gunmen attempted an attack on UnguwanMa’aji last Tuesday but the police were able to push the attackers back.

While confirming that the inspector and others were still in the hands of their abductors, he did not however confirm if a ransom had been demanded or not.

He said the command has intensified surveillance in the area and is making frantic efforts to secure the release of all the abductees.

In Gombe, despite the shutting down of the state boundaries to contain the spread of the Covid-19 in the state, investigation have revealed that there are no reports of increase in the crimes rate as a result of the closure.

Daily Trust Saturday gathered that though the state borders are shut down to travellers, commercial activities have been ongoing in all markets across the state.

Security experts said allowing markets to remain open and other commercial activities to continue, prevented upsurge in crime in the communities as the people are still busy going about their businesses and other activities.

Our correspondent reports that even before the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic in the country, most residential areas have an arrangement with the vigilantes and hunter’s association to complement the police in providing security.

Gombe State Police Command Public Relations Officer, SP Obed Mary Malum, said the existing synergy between the police, vigilante and hunters’ group has contributed greatly in containing the uprising of crimes during the current shutdown of the state.

Crime rate in Sokoto State has drastically reduced since the closure of inter-state routes about three week ago, Daily Trust has gathered.

Sokoto is not completely locked down as business and religious activities are still taking place unhindered.

In an interview with Daily Trust, the Commissioner of Police, Ibrahim Sani Kaoje, attributed the development to the proactive measures taken by combined security agencies in the state.

The commissioner commended the state government for the precautionary measures so far taken against the disease, adding that about 30 violators of restriction on movement were arrested and taken to court.

 

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Source:Daily Trust