Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
The Oyo State Government has read the riot act to hoodlums attacking private and public property in the name of the just-suspended #EndSARS protests in the State.
The warning was given by Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr Wasiu Olatubosun, in an interview with journalists after an assessment tour of the places attacked by hoodlums during the #EndSARS protests in different parts of Ibadan, the State capital.
The places visited include Ojoo Divisional Police Headquarters, where 12 vehicles and the building were completely razed, as well as Egbeda Divisional Police Headquarters at New Gbagi Market, Old Ife Road, Ibadan, where the structures and three vehicles were also burnt.
The team led by Operation Burst, a joint security outfit in the State, also visited Moniya, Monatan, Iwo Road Interchange, Agodi Area Command of the Nigeria Police Force, Agugu, Total Garden, Yemetu, Bere, Ayeye, Agbaje Market, Agbeni Market, Ogunpa Market, Oluyole Estate, and Odo-Ona.
This reporter observed that peace has returned to Ibadan, except for the isolated case of looting the empowerment items in the house of Senator Teslim Folarin, representing Oyo Central in the National Assembly. But seven suspects have been arrested in connection with the looting.
Olatubosun said: ‘We have gone round and I am happy to inform you that everywhere is calm. Business activities have picked up and people have been going out without any harassment.
‘But the peace we are witnessing in the state now would not have been possible but for the community engagement of Governor Seyi Makinde, which has helped the State to douse the tension.
‘Also, the understanding of our people and the belief they have in the leadership of Governor Makinde also worked in our favour. We also give kudos to security agencies, especially Operation Burst.’
Speaking on the dimension of isolated attacks on individuals that hoodlums seemed to be adopting in the state, Olatubosun said: ‘I appeal to those perpetrators that Oyo State is known to be peaceful and we will not condone any form of thuggery, hooliganism, violence and looting.
‘We appeal to parents and community leaders to warn their children and their followers that Oyo State is not a place where they can be destroying private and public property. I appeal to people that are angry to sheathe their swords.’