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Gunmen invade Shitta, Surulere; kill cult member

Gunmen, said to be cult members, have created panic in Shitta, Surulere, Lagos State, after unleashing terror on the residents. The assailants, numbering five, reportedly stormed the neigbhourhood in two jeeps and started shooting sporadically.

One Ete Williams was said to have been killed in the incident, while two others, identified as Danglish and Sir Feti, were injured by stray bullets. Punch Newspapers learnt that the deceased was a member of Eiye confraternity, while his killers belonged to Aiye – a rival cult group. It was gathered that the attack affected trading activities in the area, as some traders lost their wares while scampering for safety.

A resident, Azeez Aregbesola, said Williams was killed at a drinking joint called Medube where hoodlums and smokers reportedly converged on. He added that the police had been constantly raiding the joint. Aregbesola said, “They (the gang) stormed here around 8pm on Thursday. We all ran helter-skelter. All of them wore black dress. They started shooting at the roundabout and headed for Medube, where Ete (Williams) was shot in the head. The police later came after the gang had left.”

A trader, Mrs. Mariam Salako, said Danglish and Sir Feti were rushed to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital. She said, “Stray bullets hit people in the legs. It was later in the evening that I went back to pack my peppers.” Another resident, Niyi Ismail, said if not for the police that curtailed criminal acts in the community, they would still be living in fear. He, however, cautioned them against frustrating innocent people.

He said, “It was Taju, Area C Commander, who assisted us to clear Medube. It used to be a dreadful place before. But the police have recently started harassing people. Once it is 8pm, they will start arresting anybody on the street, whereas some people will be returning from their places of work. They collect at least N5,000 before they release those they arrest. A friend of mine spent two days in the police station because he could not pay. They do the same at Ojuelegba.”

Uzor Chinedu, a pop corn seller on Adebola Street, Surulere, said the police destroyed his glass in one of their raids. Taofeeq Kolapo, who resides on Makinde Street, Ojuelegba, said Taju and his team would raid the area at 7pm and smash traders’ wares.

He said, “By 8pm, everybody will be running helter-skelter, shouting ‘Taju n’bo (Taju is coming)’. They are used to the bail fee they collect and at times, they raid as early as 7pm.”

A landlord on Cregg Street, Mr. Samuel Ibikunle, urged the police to exercise caution while on patrol. The Lagos State Police spokesperson, DSP Kenneth Nwosu confirmed the attack. “He, however, dismissed the claims that police were harassing traders and residents of the community. He said, “Some masked men believed to be cultists went to the area and shot sporadically.

“One Ete Williams was killed, while six shells were recovered by the police from the scene of the incident. “The Lagos State Command has zero tolerance for cultism. “We raid on intelligence reports. Whoever is arrested must have been unable to identify himself. If we arrest unjustly, we release the person free of charge. Police can raid at anytime because crimes are committed day and night and we have to respond. That police destroy or seize goods is not true.”

Source: The Punch Newspapers

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