Residents of Ifo, Sango-Ottah, Ogbayo, Ijoko-Ota and Agbado Oke-Aro areas of Ogun State have been unable to sleep peacefully due to incessant robbery attacks in the towns for a week, HumanAngle has learnt.
The robbers are allegedly cult groups and downtrodden person taking advantage of the COVID-19 lockdown to attack homes, HumanAngle also learned.
The residents said they were being terrified day and night by gunshots by the robbers and that they were afraid of being killed.
Omotola Akinkunmi, a resident of Ifo, said, “We have had these issues since Friday, April 3.
“First, we heard it was a cult fight between two confraternities so we assumed it would not affect the communities.
“By Sunday, the thugs started their own. They started beating people and raping housewives. The news forced other people to stay in their homes.
“It is just saddening. At this time, nowhere is safe. The nights are the worst. We cannot sleep,” Akinkunmi said.
Another resident, Precious Ukoh, described the situation as bloody.
She said, “It is getting worse. These boys move in hundreds and invade our homes.
“Our men are forced to secure the streets. Even in broad daylight, we do not have peace.”
To protect themselves, residents have formed local vigilance groups in which they take turns to burn tyres to scare robbers and other criminals.
At least four people were reportedly killed on Friday night during the most recent attack. Two of the casualties were residents and the other two, robbers, sources said.
Jesse Gboyega said he was terrified on Friday night when it was his turn to be a vigilante.
“First time being a vigilante still the robbers have come again. We heard they went to another street and in some cases, they send us notifications when they are on their way.
“These ones have no fear and the police have not done anything to stop them from continuing this terror act. We cannot sleep with our eyes closed anymore,” Gboyega said.
Residents told HumAngle that they tried to get the police involved when the violence was still budding and had continued to alert the police but got no help.
When help was not forthcoming, the people decided to form vigilance groups and went on twitter to alert the world through the hashtag #OgunUnrest.
When HumAngle reached out to CP Kenneth Ebrimson of the Police Command in Ogun State, he said the people were “just unnecessarily being alarmist”.
“It is the normal pocket of cult-related issues. We had a few of them from the Ifo, Ottah and Agbado axis so it is nothing unusual.
“In this time of the month where people are looking for what to eat, we anticipated some of these things so we made provision for tackling some of these things.
“As I speak, nothing spectacular is happening in Ogun State. We are perfectly in charge and the lockdown is in effect,” Ebrimson said.
He said that on Wednesday, he received calls from residents but when he called his colleagues in the field, they said that nothing was happening.