12th August, 2011
The fear of robbery attack gripped residents of Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital today, forcing banks operating at the new Abeokuta Business District and adjoining areas to shut their doors to customers.
Residents in their hundreds who had visited their respective banks for today’s banking transactions were disappointed and went home in anger.
Many customers who went to withdraw cash resorted to using Automated Teller Machine [ATM] resulting in huge crowds at various ATM points.
The Assistant Inspector General of Police [AIG] Zone 2, Lagos, Mr Suleiman Fakai and Ogun state Police Commissioner, Mr Nicholas Daaru Nkemdeme,
moved round the state to assess the security situation following yesterday’s bank raid by a 15-man robbery gang.
Aside visiting the banks robbed in Ilaro yesterday, Fakai and Nkemdeme, also deployed more policemen in the state to ensure safety of life and properties.
Our correspondent gathered that the banks shut were acting on information from security sources that the 15-man armed gang that successfully attacked three banks simultaneously yesterday in Ilaro, Ogun state, had moved into the state capital threatening a repeat of the Ilaro feat.
A private guard manning the security post of one of the banks in Okeâ€“Ilewo told anxious customers that a Divisional Police Officer gave all banks in the area the instruction not to open their gates for entry by customers until further notice.
The Ogun State Police Command Public Relations Officer, DSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, denied that the Police
ordered banks in Abeokuta to close shop.
He put the blame at the doorsteps of those he called â€œmischief makers.â€
Adejobi said, â€œthe AIG Zone 2, the Commissioner of Police and senior officers are moving round, they also visited the bank robbery scene and for deployment of more policemen. It is not true that the police ordered that banks should close down. It is the handiwork of mischief makers.â€
During the Ilaro bank raidyesterday, four persons, including an Assistant Superintendent of Police and a toddler, were killed while many others were injured by the armed
gang who, in a coordinated attack, used rocket launcher, dynamite and other sophisticated weapons to bring down the security doors of the targeted banks.
For over 50 minutes, there was chaos, terror and blood everywhere. Staff, customers, residents and passers-by within a kilometre radius of the raided banks were terrified.
The robbers successfully carted away huge sums of money, handsets and other valuables from their victims.
By Abiodun Onafuye/Abeokuta