The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) on Monday paraded twenty suspects over the recent ethnic crisis in Sabo Ile-Ife of Osun State.
Police spokesman, Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) Jimoh Moshood while parading the suspects at the Force Headquarters in Abuja, said they were part of thirty eight suspects arrested following investigation into the crisis.
He said consequent on the clashes, disturbance of public peace and mayhem that occurred in Ile-Ife, Osun State on the 8th of March, 2017 which resulted in the loss of innocent lives and destruction of properties worth Millions of Naira.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Ibrahim Idris deployed Police Special Intervention Force, comprising Five Units of the Police Mobile Force (PMF specially trained Anti-Riot Policemen), Five Cells of Counter Terrorism Unit and Conventional Policemen.
Other units deployed include; Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Intelligence Response Team, Technical Intelligence Unit, SIB, detachment of EOD, Police K9 (Sniffer Dogs Section), all led by the Commissioner of Police in charge of PMF, Force Headquarters, Abuja.
Moshood said the operations covered the entire Ile-Ife and environs, and other flash/trouble spots in Osun State, and was successfully executed leading to the arrest, detention and investigation of thirty eight suspects.
He said out of the thirty eight suspects initially arrested twenty suspects were found culpable for direct and indirect participation in the killing of innocent people, maiming and destruction of properties of the victims worth millions of naira.
He added that they will be prosecuted on completion of investigation, while the remaining eighteen suspects have been released unconditionally for lack of prima facie evidence against them yet.
He explained that: “On Tuesday, 7th March 2017 at about 2010hrs, one Alh. Nasiru Abdul Magaji of no. 50, Sabo Street, Ile-Ife, Osun State reported at Moore Police Station that one Oba Ademola Ademiluyi the Lawarikan of Apoje land, one Eluwole Akeem and Kuburat wife of Eluwole Akeem all of Ile-Ife,”
“Brought some hoodlums with cutlasses and other dangerous weapons to attack the Hausas resident at Sabo area of Ile Ife over a fight between one Abubakar Mohammed of Sabo and Kuburat the wife of Eluwole Akeem,” He added.
He said: “The affray which arose from an altercation between the said Kuburat and Mohammed, was amicably settled on Monday, 6th March 2017.”
He added that: “Based on the report at the Moore Police Station, a case of conduct likely to cause breach of peace was made against the duo of Kuburat and Mohammed and on getting to the scene; the Police team met two groups comprising the Hausas and the Yorubas throwing stones at each other.”
“The riotous groups were dispersed and calm was restored. The responding Police teams maintained presence at Sabo area of Ile Ife up till the next day,” He added.
He said: “Unexpectedly, on Wednesday 8th March, 2017, the peace of the area was shattered with the eruption of crisis that led to the gruesome killings of forty-six people.”
The police said: “a total of ninety-six other persons were taken to Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (OAUTH) out of which eighty one of them were treated and discharged, while fifteen of the victims are still on admission receiving treatment.”