There was controversy in Oyo State on Sunday after police allegedly detained three members of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) for arresting a notorious kidnapper in the state, Iskilu Wakili.
PREMIUM TIMES earlier reported that Mr Wakili and three of his accomplices, who have been fingered in various kidnappings and killings in the past in Ibarapa and Oke Ogun axis of the state, was arrested after several attempts.
He also has a history of allegedly seizing hectares of farmlands in the community with threat to lives of owners.
The OPC, has, however, raised an alarm that three of its operatives were detained when they went to hand over Mr Wakili to the police.
“We took Wakili and the three others from Igangan to Igboora and handed them over to the DPO at Igboora. The name of the DPO is Ajayi Mark.
“As I am talking to you, they have taken them to Iyaganku at the State CID in Ibadan with three of my boys,” Adedeji Oluwole, the OPC coordinator, was quoted as saying by Punch Newspaper.
Narrating how the event unfolded, he said the police asked them to take Mr Wakili to the hospital “which we refused because we are not in a position to do that. We told the police that they have been complaining all these days that they wanted to arrest Wakili and now we have brought Wakili to their doorstep, they should take over.”
“Nobody touched Wakili, nobody hurt him, there are no traces of any hurt on him. He is an old man and we had promised the whole world that we won’t hurt them but we would arrest them for the whole world to see who is Wakili because all these while, he has been a faceless person, nobody knows him.
“We didn’t beat him or harm him. When we nabbed him, we put him inside a vehicle and handed him over to the police.
“The DPO then said he got a signal from the CP (Commissioner of Police) in Iyaganku. They have taken three of my men to Iyaganku now”, he alleged.
PREMIUM TIMES reached out to the state police spokesperson, Olugbenga Fadeyi, but he did not respond to calls and text messages.
Calls for investigation
Angered by the development, the International Alliance for Justice and Peace (IAJP) said it is horrified to hear reports that men of the police arrested four members of the OPC team that effected the apprehension of Mr Wakili and his men.
The group in a statement by its leader, Seun Kolade, said the arrest of the OPC officials is an “assault on the sensibilities of all men and women of goodwill, not only across Yorubaland but anywhere in the world.
“It is an established and acceptable principle of law that citizens have the right to, and are in fact encouraged to apprehend an individual or individuals who have committed or are in the process of committing indictable or felonious acts, the likes of those Wakilu and his men have been accused.
“Citizen arrest, especially when carried out with utmost regards to the requirement of the law as exemplified by the men of the OPC in this present matter, is not only commendable, it is also a charitable community act that should be encouraged.
“We call on the police high command to investigate this reported incident, as it undermines the working synergy that should exist between the police and neighbourhoods’ security stakeholders.”
The group called on security operatives to correct the impression taking hold among the populace before peoples’ minds are closed up on the growing image of security agencies as champions of terror.
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