Posted by Laide Raheem, Abeokuta | 23 April 2019 | 825 times
Police in Ogun State have arrested 25 suspects in connection with the mayhem that characterised a traditional festival in Ifo Local Government Area of the state.
The police also declared missing, a police inspector after a bloody clash between suspected hoodlums at the annual Akoogun festival held in Ifo town at the weekend.
Hoodlums, suspected to be cultists had on Sunday clashed in the town after a heated argument, which led to the death of one person. The hoodlums later set ablaze the constituency office of the Deputy Speaker of Ogun State House of Assembly, Olakunle Oluomo, located at Coker Bus top.
Five buses belonging to Oluomo were also burnt during the skirmish, which forced motorists and commuters on the Sango-Ifo-Abeokuta expressway to scamper to safety on Sunday night.
Speaking with journalists after the Commissioner of Police in the state, Bashir Makama, visited the scene on Monday afternoon, the spokesperson of the Ogun State police command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the arrest of 25 suspects.
He also confirmed that both the constituency office of the deputy speaker and five buses parked at Coker Bus-stop, belonging to him were also burnt by the arsonists .
He, however, declared that the whereabout of the Inspector of Police was unknown since Sunday when the incident happened.
“Now, a police inspector is missing. The police inspector was inflicted with machete cuts during the mob attack and up till now his whereabout is unknown. That gave the credence that they were attacked,” he said.
The PPRO added that a young man, simply identified as Akeem was hit by a stray bullet and died after which policemen dispatched to repel the clash between the hoodlums came under serious attack.
According to Oyeyemi, men of the Zonal Intervention Squad, Obada in Ewekoro Local Government Area, had already arrested a suspect for being in possession of guns at the festival and the hoodlums prevented the squad from whisking him away by attacking the police.
The PPRO said: “That suspect mentioned another person that he was part of the notorious cult group which they all belonged to. It was that one that was taken to Ifo to identify the suspect and they had successfully arrested him. But on their way coming, they mobbed and attacked the officers and in the course of escaping from the attack, they released gun shots and incidentally, it hit one person and he died.”
He however, said few minutes after the incident, some hoodlums went to the office of the deputy Speaker in Coker Bus Stop and set it ablaze along with the five buses.
He described the act as criminal and vowed that those perpetrators would be made to face the law.
“Some people mobilised themselves and attacked the office of the deputy Speaker, burnt down the office and five vehicles parked at the premises.
“The correlation between the incident that happened and the reaction of the people is what we cannot establish, because there is no nexus between the two.
“For now, we have arrested 25 suspects. The issues are two – the case of murder and arson.
“But, the case of arson is what the people have committed. That act is pure criminal, there is nothing that warrants the spontaneous action,” the PPRO submitted.
He, however, said that the 25 suspects have been handed over to the State Criminal and Investigation Department, noting: “They are going to be screened, those who are not directly involved will be released and those who are directly involved are going to face the law”. (Daily Sun)
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