13th June, 2012
For what they described as unwarranted loss of lives and property resulting from frequent clashes between rival groups, residents of Otumara/Ilaje, Ifesowapo, Otto central, Atitebi, Ilogbo Otto extension and Iyagan Community Development Associations in Ebute Meta, Lagos, have appealed to Lagos State Government and the state Commissioner of Police to come to their rescue.
The residents said their lives and property are no longer safe as a result of incessant clashes by street urchins(area boys) in the area.
Chairman of Iyagan Peace and Progress Community Development Association, Mr. Odafe O.Ogun, said: “We are not Somalia, neither are we in war in the country. It is alarming that we have been under siege, and anytime any of them is arrested by the police, he gets released before you know it.
“We want the state government to set up an investigation panel and summon all traditional and political leaders in the area to a meeting where they should be made to sign an undertaken, as a way to end the clashes .”
Chairman, Ifesowapo Community Development Association, Comrade Agbodemu Ishola, stated that the communities, in an attempt to curtail the activities of the street urchins, engaged a vigilance group, a measure he said has not achieved the desired result.
He said: “As part of our effort, the six CDAs came together to employed vigilantes and this has given us a little respite but the area boys have resorted to attacking the men and if anyone of them is arrested, before we know it, some moneybags would get them released.
“We need the assistance of the state government and the police commissioner to get out of this situation.”
Agbodemu attributed the frequent clashes among the area boys to the quest for supremacy, adding that the clashes also have political undertone, as politicians in the area engage the area boys to settle scores with their opponents.
He corroborated Ogun’s words by appealing to state government to summon all politicians and traditional chiefs and make them sign an undertaken as a way to restore peace in the area.
It was gathered that from last October to date, more than 10 persons have been killed while property worth millions of naira have been destroyed.