20 April 2017

Nigeria: Police Raid Lagos Creeks, Kill One Militant

A special force comprising Lagos State Marine Police, Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Anti-Riot Police and Anti-Kidnapping Squad wednesday raided hideouts of militants in Ishawo creeks, killing one suspected militant.

The operation, coordinated by the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, and led by the Commander of the Rapid Response Squad, Mr. Tunji Disu, also led to the arrest of 13 other suspected militants.

The special force raided the entire stretch of Lagos-Ogun creeks about two weeks after the suspected militants killed four police officers and one army captain, in an ambush in Ishawo creeks.

Consequent on the ambush that culminated in the death of four police officers and one military officer, the state governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, said every perpetrator linked to the act would face justice.

Giving journalists updates after the operation yesterday, Owoseni said 13 suspected kidnappers "have already been arrested and are currently aiding the special force to track the suspects that are still on the run."

The police commissioner, who addressed journalists alongside the RRS commander and Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Habib Aruna, acknowledged that the governor ordered the joint operation, which he said, culminated in the death of one militant and the apprehension of 13 others.

According to him, the operation yielded positive results. Following the attack that occurred at Ishawo where we lost four of our policemen and army captain, we have deployed operatives in the creeks.

He said: "What you have seen now is for us to appraise what we have been doing in the last one week. So, we have arrested suspected militants. We are talking to the suspects that we arrested. Likewise, the suspects we have arrested are already talking to us and giving us useful information.

"We will get some meaningful evidence from those we arrested from the creeks. The evidence we are obtaining from those we arrested will help us know who we are looking for so that we will not be just wild catching."

Owoseni noted that the visit was "to appraise the work done so far and the next line of action. Earlier this morning, our special force was able to get to the proper camps of these criminal elements where they saw some of them cooking food who fled immediately they saw our combined force.

"We just feel that we should take a decision to destroy the camps. The destruction of the camps is ongoing. That is why we are here and the officers that are handling the destruction of the camps are right inside the creeks now. At the end of the day, they will share the story when they finish the operations.

"But our movement here is just for you to see the terrain and see what the security operatives are facing with regards to policing this environment. That is why we are clamouring for the destruction of these shanties."

Owoseni confirmed that one of the suspected militants died during a sustained raid of the creeks, assuring residents in the area that the special force "will ensure that all criminal elements in the state are fished out.

"We still want to assure members of the public that these people have murdered sleep and they will not sleep, we will make sure that all of them are rooted out and that they face the full weight of the law.

"At least, 13 suspects were arrested. We are interrogating them and they are making useful statements for us. We are making progress. You can see that helicopter surveillance is also supporting all we are doing.

"But we want to assure members of the public around this axis that the government is ready. The security agents are equally ready to ensure that we put an end to the madness of these criminal elements."

Owoseni noted that the police had already gathered necessary information on the perpetrators still on the run, noting that they would be arrested one after the other and be made to face the full wrath of the law.

He commended the security operatives adding that the efforts of the local vigilante groups who are familiar with the terrain was critical to the operation especially in aiding to navigate the hideouts of the militants.

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