Police Arrest 16 as Factional Crisis Claims Seven in Lagos

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Chiemelie Ezeobi

Police in Lagos State have arrested 16 suspects in connection with a protracted factional crisis between two cult groups in Badia, a suburb of the state in Apapa-Iganmu Council Area, which has claimed seven lives in the past three days.

Led by CSP Idyar Apev, the Badia Police Division was said to have arrested the suspects as the death toll increased and properties worth millions of naira were also carted away during the period of terror.

Aided by a team from the Anti-cultism Unit of the state police command, the police operatives also recovered 10 expended cartridges, just as the suspects are currently undergoing interrogation at the unit.

Meanwhile, two other persons were said to have sustained vital injuries from the gunshot by the factions during the bloody clash.

During the three-day fracas, the opposing gangs known as Railway boys and Suara boys, unleashed mayhem in the suburb, totting dangerous weapons like locally made pistols, long guns and machetes.

After the reign of terror, three of the seven deceased persons were identified as Muyideen Saka of 30B Baale street, a marketing staff of Leadway Assurance Company and one Wasiu Ajani of 42 Baale street as well as a trader of northern extraction simply identified as Isah.

On the other hand, one of the injured victims was identified as Wasiu Yusuf, having sustained serious gunshot injury and was rushed to a private hospital (name withheld) for medical attention.

Another victim, who was identified as Wasiu Jimoh of Church Street, who escaped unhurt, however had his household properties carted away.

Also, the residence of the founder of Liberty Church of Zion, Primate Ayanfe Ikuyinminu, located behind Ajeromi Primary School, was also looted by the hoodlums alongside that of several other residents.

Meanwhile, although the police have arrested some suspects, the residents revealed that the real culprits responsible for the mayhem were omitted.

According to some residents who spoke under the condition of anonymity, this recent clash started when some armed youths, purportedly from the Suara faction, invaded the Railway line section of the community, shooting sporadically and injuring some residents.

They were said to have been repelled by the Railway boys, who chased them towards the white sand area of the community, and killed two among them.

Following the killing of the two Suara boys, they regrouped the following day and launched a reprisal on the Railway boys and also killed two.

In their bid to retaliate, the Railway boys pursued them in the direction of Baale and Church streets where it was turned to a theatre of war.

A community leader, who also spoke on anonymity, said they have engaged the services of members of the O’odua Peoples Congress (OPC) to partner the police to protect the community.