As the year 2020 is gradually coming to an end, security operatives, motorists and other road users have identified some hotbeds of crime in Lagos and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
In Lagos particularly, incidents of cultists’ attacks and killings have intensified as the year comes to an end, while street fights and gang wars have also been going on in some parts of the state.
The areas so far identified as flashpoints for violence and killings in recent times include: Ijede and Ogijo areas of Ikorodu; Alapere area of Ketu; Ojo and Ajangbadi areas; Oyingbo, Ajegunle, Ijora Badia, Ojuelegba and Fadeyi areas.
Others are: Onipanu, Oshodi, Mushin, Somolu, Akoka and Bariga areas.
Police sources confirmed that the age-long cult war between the Eiye and Aye confraternities as well as robberies and assaults against residents have also intensified in those areas.
In Abuja, the flashpoints for crime, according to motorists and security experts, who spoke to SaharaReporters are: Zuba-Giri Road, Dantata Bridge, Galadimawa-Lugbe Junction, Gudu – Galadimawa area, Berger Roundabout, Kuje Junction, and Mpape Junction.
As the year is coming to an end, there are more reports of people, especially ladies, being robbed of their handbags, phones and other valuables at gunpoint. The criminals take advantage of the bushes and hills to perpetrate their crimes and escape into the thick of darkness.
Some observers noted that during the October #EndSARS protests, some of the hoodlums who hijacked the protests and looted police stations and other public places may have had access to rifles and other dangerous weapons with which they now perpetrate more crimes.
The Lagos State Police Command confirmed that at least 26 police stations in the state were burnt by the hoodlums while station rifles and other ammunition were stolen.
The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Muyiwa Adejobi, said over 100 hoodlums who participated in the arson and looting of the police stations as well as the sacking of banks and malls in Lekki and Surulere areas had also been arrested by the command.
“The hoodlums collected some rifles from policemen; we have been able to recover some of the rifles with the help of the communities. We are still looking for maybe one or two rifles. Before the attacks, we also took steps to preserve the exhibits for prosecution.
“We have several community leaders who helped the police to recover the weapons. They also are standing up to ensure that no station is burnt again,” he said in an interview.
With a population of over 20 million people and just over 30,000 policemen, Lagos State residents have been helpless in the face of crimes.
Just last week, cult members invaded the Jakande Market, Ketu area, killing two persons.
SaharaReporters had reported exclusively that the cult members hacked to death one bus conductor, identified as Kamarudeen Jeje, while another person, Musa Ishola was killed in similar fashion on Olasupo Street, Alapere, Ketu.
It had been reported that policemen from the Ketu division and Area H Command, Ogudu, later raided the market, arrested and detained 15 suspects for the killings.
Apart from Ketu, similar pockets of killings go on in Ikorodu, Fadeyi and Oyingbo areas, particularly as the year is coming to an end.
Some residents who spoke with our correspondent noted that the police should strengthen security in their areas, as the criminals were having a field day because of the perceived weakening of the police force during the recent #EndSARS protests.
“There are several areas in this state where you cannot visit in the evening. I stay in Oyingbo and I know we hear gunshots regularly on my street. The cultists kill one another with impunity and sometimes, when they get mad, they attack innocent residents and passersby. During this festive season, they would waylay you in daylight and ask for their Christmas and New Year gifts. God help you if you are not able to give them anything,” a resident, Akinlawon Akinosun, stated.
The Lagos police PRO, Adejobi, promised in an interview that the command would not give any breathing space to criminals in any part of the state.