On their arrival, the hoodlums were said to have shot sporadically and destroyed several property in the area. Two people were said to have lost their lives as a result of gunshot injury during the incident. Following the confusion that ensued in the reprisal attack, majority of the shops in the area were shut with several houses deserted on Friday.
Some residents of Coca Cola, Leventis, Ajibade, Ajegunle, Oke- Itunu and other adjoining neighbourhoods in Ibadan North Local Government Area of Oyo State have allegedly deserted their homes and shops following a reprisal attack by some suspected hoodlums in the area.
The Street Journal gathered that trouble started on Friday after the Thursday killing of a suspected thief who was arrested by an angry mob in the area.
Checks showed that all entreaties by the elders of the community that the thief be handed over to the police for proper investigation and prosecution fell on deaf ears as the mob insisted on meting immediate judgement to him.
In a reprisal attack on Friday, some hoodlums swooped on the communities, armed with dangerous weapons and attacked the unsuspecting residents.
A shop owner at Ajibade who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that “The hoodlums, numbering about three on a commercial motorcycle stormed the area around 4pm for a reprisal attack and shot at two people. A man (name not known), and a woman simply identified as Toyin were shot during the confusion that ensued in the community as many people were scampering for safety.”
He said that the man died immediately as a result of the gunshot while the woman gave up the ghost on Friday morning due to complications that arose as a result of the impact of the bullet.
The eyewitness added that the residents fled the area for fear of being attacked by the hoodlums.
He said, “It was so strange and frightening. At first, many people could not understand what was going and the reason for the reprisal attack on the community. We were wondering; it was a terrible exeprience for us yesterday. They shot indiscriminately at every direction. At the end of the day, two people lost their lives while several others sustained varying degrees of injury.”
When contacted, the Public Relations Officer of Oyo State Police Command, Mr. Olugbenga Fadeyi, confirmed the incident. The PPRO said the police have dispatched some of its men in the area to forestall further reprisal attacks, but that only one person lost his life in the incident.
“The information I had indicated that some hoodlums in the area set ablaze a man suspected to be a thief on Thursday morning. Later, three men suspected to be cultists went on a reprisal attack and shot at the man named Ojo Jacob. The victim was about 58 years old. The hoodlums shot at him and bolted away.
“In order to forestall further damage and loss of lives, some anti crime policemen and patrol vehicles have been stationed in the area. Our men are presently on surveillance in the communities in order to forestall further attacks on the people. The police are also on the trail of the men of the suspects for possible arrest.”
It will be recalled that the Oyo State Police Command had issued several warnings against the rising cases of jungle justice in the state. The PPRO said that whoever is caught trying to take law into his hand would be made to face commensurate punishment.