No fewer than four persons were on Monday killed during a gun battle that caused pandemonium in the Ibafo area of Ogun State after some militants, suspected to be pipeline vandals clashed with some security operatives in the area.
Punch reports that trouble broke out after a leader of the vandals was arrested and was being taken to the Ibafo Police Station. The report claimed that some hoodlums reportedly attacked the policemen, who returned fire, leading to a fierce gun battle.
A resident, whose wife sustained gunshot injury, told the Punch, “I was in my office with my wife when I saw an OP MESA vehicle, and suddenly they started shooting sporadically.
“Then I saw a vandal; he also was shooting. Suddenly, the gunshots were coming from all directions. My wife was shot in the hand and I had to rush her to a hospital. I learnt that three people died.”
Another resident, Ayo, said the fight started after one of the leaders of the vandals was arrested in the Ebute area of Ibafo.
According to Ayo, “The fight started after a vandal was arrested around the Ebute area. When his colleagues got to know about it, they started a protest, which degenerated into a gun battle.
“They have been shooting at one another since 4pm. Up till now (6pm), the fight is still on. We need a military base here to address this problem.
“These vandals are heavily armed. A lot of people have been injured and killed,” Ayo added.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, DSP Muyiwa Adejobi, said four persons were killed.
He said, “The fight was between the military personnel guarding the pipelines and some militants, who are vandals. The police were not involved.
“The security operatives have been able to subdue them and normalcy has been restored to the area. As of now, four persons are confirmed dead. One person was injured and has been admitted in a hospital.
“One of the vandals was also shot dead, but his corpse was quickly taken away by his friends,” Adejobi said.