•Police commands argue over jurisdiction
By Christopher Oji
Following the abduction of four landlords by suspected gunmen in military uniforms on Saturday at Isheri, a boundary community between Lagos and Ogun states, the residents are still in shock as the kidnappers have vowed to kill the captives if NI billion ransom is not paid.
A resident, Mr Marvel Nwokike said: “The landlords are still in captivity. The hoodlums have demanded N1billion and have threatened to kill them if the money was not paid. The problem we have is that the two state police commands are trading blames on whose jurisdiction the community falls into. Who will now go on rescue mission or investigate?”
The Ogun State Police Command’s spokesman,Abinbola Oyeyemi, claimed the crime did not take place under its jurisdiction, adding, “the state Commissioner of Police,Mr Ahmed Iliyasu, has visited the estate today (yesterday) and has assured them of police readiness to work with the Lagos State command to rescue the victims”
However, Daily Sun investigation revealed that the place falls right under Ogun State command.
But Lagos State police spokesperson, Dolapo Badmos, said:”Police are one even though the area falls under Ogun State jurisdiction,we did not wait as we have activated a process aimed at rescuing the kidnap victims alive.
“We don’t argue over jurisdiction as we have taken the lead to ensure that the victims are rescued alive since lives are involved.Everyone knows that the place falls right under the jurisdiction of the Ogun State command, but the Lagos State command always want to take the lead and partner other commands. We have activated some rescue process and by the grace of God, the victims will be rescued alive.
“What we are asking the Ogun State command is to take over investigation of the matter as it falls within its jurisdiction. We will assist in the rescue mission,but,let the command take over the investigation”, Badmos said.
The Assistant Inspector – General of Police (AIG), Zone 2, Abdulmajid Ali, who spoke to Daily Sun said the police were not aware of N1billion ransom demand by the gunmen.
According to him, “I am not aware of any demand for ransom, but we have commenced investigation and we are going to rescue the landlords alive. The Commissioner of Police, Ogun State Command, Ahmed Iliyasu, was there today (yesterday) and both Lagos and Ogun commands are briefing me on the development. We are all out at ensuring that the victims are rescued.”
Gunmen on Saturday stormed Isheri and abducted four landlords.
The victims were having their routine physical exercise near the Lekki Gardens Estate when the gunmen invaded the area.
The gunmen, numbering about eight, wore masks and threatened to kill anyone who resisted them.
A resident, John Kosiso, told newsmen, “the gunmen came through the creeks and took away the landlords. They usually have their Saturday fitness training near Lekki Gardens Estate, near the bush. They abducted the Physical Trainer also.
“This morning, they arrived at the place and spread their mats and were about starting the aerobics when the gunmen came out from the bush. They were about eight that came out. They covered their faces with masks and they were all wearing military uniforms. (Two gunmen blocked different paths, while four went for the landlords
“Eight landlords were initially abducted, Four of the landlords went the same direction and they were taken away by the gunmen, while four others escaped.
“The trainer also ran into a different direction and nobody can say what has happened to him. We have looked around the area and we could not find him”, he said.
The landlords, who escaped, later reported the matter at Isheri Divisional Police Station in Lagos State.
The residents, however, expressed displeasure at what they described as the insensitivity of the policemen, who came to the area, shortly after the landlords were abducted.
A resident said: The policemen came and did not even bother to search the bush around the area. It appeared that they were afraid of the gunmen.”