At least, six policemen were killed while 38 others were wounded in Lagos State during the #EndSARS protests. The state Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, who disclosed this yesterday, said his men had apprehended 520 suspects in connection with the Policemen’s killing and other criminal acts during the protests.
Addressing journalists at the Police Headquarters, Odumosu also disclosed that 30 police stations and posts were burnt, while 18 police stations and posts were vandalised. The commissioner explained that the 520 suspects were held for various offences ranging from arson to robbery, murder, rioting, malicious damage, and unlawful possession of firearms.
“The protests which started peacefully turned violent on Monday, October 12, when some criminally-minded hoodlums at the Surulere protest venue cashed-in on the precarious situation. “They proceeded to attack the Anti kidnapping Unit’s Office of the Command located at Iyun Road, Western Avenue, Surulere, with premeditated intention to liberate suspected kidnappers detained inside the facility.
“In the process, three of the policemen on duty were shot and critically injured while two suspects were set free,” the Commissioner said.
Odumosu listed the murdered policemen as an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Yard Edward, attached to Denton Station; Inspector Olayinka Erinfolami, attached to the defunct Anti-Kidnapping Unit; Inspector Adegbenro Aderibigbe, attached to Meiran Division; Sergeant Abejide Abiodun, attached to Operations, State Headquarters and two others attached to Orile Police Station. According to him, four civilians also lost their lives during the crises in the state.
He added: “At least 58 police vehicles at various locations within the state were burnt, while 13 police vehicles were vandalised. “Also, 62 vehicles, belonging to individuals and those connected with some pending cases were burnt while nine vehicles were vandalised by the hoodlums. Similarly, 15 motorcycles and tricycles were burnt, while 65 were vandalised at various locations within the state.” Odumosu added that 67 buses at BRT Terminal, Iddo, were burnt.
He said: “Most importantly, 19-year old Olamilekan Ibrahim, who is among those that broke into a new generation bank and carted away cash and other valuables in Lekki, was arrested with N250,000, which is his own share of the loot from the banks, and a locally-made pistol”.
“Also, two suspects, Ebere Ruben (29) and Samuel Oyediran (16), were arrested by operatives of Rapid Response Squad (RRS) for their involvement in the burning of the BRT terminal at Berger and TVC Station in Lagos State, respectively, with left-over of some quantities of petroleum products with which they set the places ablaze.”
The police chief said that in the light of the above, it was now a known fact that the protest was hijacked by armed hoodlums who had been responsible for a series of killings, arson and looting of many shopping outlets in the state.
He said: “Thorough investigation into the cases has commenced. Members of the public should be assured that they will be updated as investigation progresses.”
Meanwhile, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has read a riot act to miscreants and hoodlums in Lagos, urging them to be law-abiding and peaceful or face the full wrath of the law. Speaking during a visit to Fagba in Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government Area of Lagos State to assess the level of destruction of properties caused by last week’s ethnic clash between Yoruba and Hausa community in the area, Sanwo-Olu said the state government would be hard and very decisive on miscreants if they refuse to turn a new leaf.
He said: “The level of destruction that I have seen here is colossal; it is unfortunate. Enumeration would start immediately by the two local governments. The council chairmen and all the community leaders will come together and come up with a list of those whose properties have been destroyed”.
The security operatives are here; they can hear everything. We are using this opportunity to give notices to all the miscreants in the neighbourhood and that is why I am looking at you. “If you know that you are not doing any work and that you are one of the people that have caused this trouble, we are giving you the final notice because we are coming to clear this whole place”.