By Christopher Oji
Residents of Yewa community, in Isawo area of Ikorodu, Lagos have deserted the area following Sunday’s killing of an Army Captain, four policemen and a young man by militants.
Also shot was the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Owutu Police Station, a two-year-old boy and many others who are receiving treatment in the hospitals.
As at 4pm yesterday, residents were still fleeing the zone in droves and there was no presence of security agencies.
A few residents that were seen in the area were looking terrified and wondering what their fate would be.
A community leader, Shola Kuditi, told Daily Sun: “Over 12 people were killed during the Sunday attack. Four policemen, including Owutu DPO, an Army Captain, a young man and many others were shot. Many were injured.
“Many of us have not seen our family members. It is difficult to say how many persons that were killed or taken away by the kidnappers. Right now, the kidnappers have just called, demanding ransom on a boy. We may receive other calls from them.
“Our greatest fear is that there is no presence of government’s security agencies. We are left to die. The government has abandoned us. The Commissioner of Police visited on Sunday and assured us that we will be protected, but, there is no security. You have gone round. Have you seen any patrol vehicle or policemen?
“We are afraid that the soldiers and the police may come to avenge the death of their colleagues shot dead by the militants. It will be bloody, because, the militants have advised us to leave the place, as they would resist government agencies. My brother, that is why we are running away.”
Another resident, Mr. Raheem Olanrewaju, however, said one person was still missing and that the kidnappers had contacted them, saying they needed N3,000 recharge card to make urgent calls.
Olanrewaju said the gun battle between the kidnappers and the police lasted for more than three hours, during which the DPO in charge of Owutu station was shot and a resident, called Osazie, was killed alongside others.
He said they had employed the service of some vigilantes to keep watch.
He said: “A boy was kidnapped and they are yet to get back to us to tell us how much ransom we should bring.”
Another resident, Adetola Adeyemi, said he had never experienced such an attack by over 40 kidnappers who dressed in military uniform and held the community hostage for more than four hours.
He said one Ojo and his wife sustained bullet injuries, a two-year-old girl and her mother were also injured, while houses and property destroyed.
He said the government should act fast and the governor to come and see thing by himself.
An elder in the community, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said they were surrounded by the creek and would want the government to come and clear it and establish a military base, so as to dissuade the criminals from further attacks.
A resident identified simply as Olushola said it was a recurring decimal because it happened last year and it appears this is snowballing into a full war.
He pointed out that the attackers had field day reigning terror on them and took away Chubuike Okeke and boasted to the residents that if they called for help no one would come.
“We are good people; you can see that there are more than four houses here; those of us left are not up to 30, just because we have no place to go and we must be able to defend our homes. All our wives and children have gone elsewhere. We need a military base to be stationed here; we have the right to safety and protection and that is the job of the government.”