Lagos community urges government to step up fight against cultism

Lagos community urges government to step up fight against cultism

More than four months after the Lagos State Police Command declared a state of emergency against religious cults, residents of some affected areas in Lagos have been calling on the state government to address the menace.

Although the police announced the arrest of cult gang leaders within months of the declaration, residents in areas such as Ipaja/Ayobo, Isoro and Ikorodu continue to witness cult activities in their neighbourhoods.

Ayobo residents called on law enforcement agencies to continue to adopt a community policing approach in working with the Police Community Relations Committee to sensitize the community.

Another resident of Isolo praised the efforts of the Nigeria Police Force in arresting some members of the newly formed cult named Ariba and Agbara. Ironically, the perpetrators were arrested in their hideouts around Ayobo and Atan areas in Ogun State, areas also notorious for cult activities.

Recall that earlier this year, in June, a number of suspected cultists were arrested in Ikorodu, Badagry and Isolo.

Spokesman of the command, Benjamin Fundein, who paraded the suspects, said the activities of the cultists in the state had been kept to a minimum due to the decentralized efforts of the Commissioner of Police, Idowu Olowunwa. .

However, cult members’ activities reportedly extend deeper, from schools to local communities and even among market traders.

The woman, who preferred to be known simply as Caroline, said she was living in Ikorodu before her husband had an affair with a cult member while lecturing at the Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu campus and fled fearing for his life. Ta. .

Her husband, who she gave as Moses Afeso, has been in hiding for almost five years after several boys who approached him asking for help in manipulating their grades were arrested. “Eventually, Ms. Moses became a target and she endured assaults and assaults that nearly cost her her life, until one day she escaped,” she said.

Caroline said that several innocent people have been devastated by the cult’s activities or have been victimized during the cult’s activities. Some of those who encountered the fighting groups lost their lives in the process, while others are still nursing their wounds years later.

Clash between rival cults is primarily a struggle for supremacy, but there are also cases of theft, assault, and even murder. An example of this is the ongoing trial of three suspected members of an IBILE cult group who are suspected of killing Mr. Barre’s son, Mr. Owolabi Ajibola, at Kirikiri Street in Olodi-Apapa.

The trial of the defendants, Jemil Adamu, Babatunde Gbenga and Jimo Idris, will be held at the Lagos State High Court, Tafawa Balewa Square, on two counts of conspiracy, unlawful community and murder as prioritized by the Lagos State Government. , Police prosecution witness, Inspector Usan Otu, who gave evidence on Monday, October 30, 2023, by the state prosecutor, EO Anyabisi, told the court that the defendant committed the crime on April 22, 2018.

Speaking before Justice Yetunde Adesanya, Out said: “The first defendant stated that on the day of the incident, he and a group of 23 others were returning from a joint called Rita’s Joint, and on the way there he got into an argument with them.” The deceased and one of Alome brought out a knife. , another member of the group, Adejo, retrieved a knife and stabbed the deceased in the chest.

“He said they left him there and chased him, but by the time the deceased was taken to hospital he was pronounced dead,” the witness said. According to Olayemi Shofor, prosecuting, the crime violated sections 223 and 42 of the 2015 Lagos State Penal Code.

Areas most affected by cult activities in Lagos include Ikorodu, the densely populated areas of Ajegunle, Fadei, Mushin, Surulere, Bariga, Oworoshoki, Shomolu and Palm Grove areas. Other areas in the state include Dopemu, Agege, Ogba, Iyana-Ipaja, Ago areas, Badagry, Lekki, Okokomaiko, Aja, Ipaja and Ayobo areas.


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