Three persons have been feared killed and others injured as police detectives from the Special Tactical Squad (STS), Federal Investigation Bureau (FIB), Abuja clashed with some suspected cultists in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital Saturday.
The incident which occurred around Lajolo, a community in Ilorin East Local Government around Kwara State Polytechnic, resulted in the cancellation of the ongoing examination of the institution.
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When Daily Trust on Sunday visited the area yesterday, the polytechnic gate was shut and soldiers were sighted patrolling the area in about five Hilux vans.
The road was also littered with bonfires.
It was gathered that the IG’s team was in Kwara on the trail of some cultists following the increase in their activities lately.
An eyewitness said the operatives stormed the community around 6am in Gestapo style in an 18-seater Toyota Hiace Bus and pulled down doors of students some of who were still sleeping at the time.
It was learnt that an 18-year-old carpenter apprentice, Fatai Jamiu, was hit by a stray bullet and later died at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH).
Also, one Shaoban Abdulrasheed who was allegedly hit by bullets was taken away by the operatives.
“A student of the polytechnic also shot during the raid is battling for his life at an undisclosed hospital. But seven male students have been arrested,” a source said.
Rasheed Imam, the older brother of Jamiu, while narrating the circumstance leading to his death said, “The operatives started shooting in the air and the bullet hit Jamiu where he was standing. As he tried to run, he was shot the second time in his back.”
The Mogaji Lajolo, Alhaji Issa Alao, said the activities of the security agencies in the area had become worrisome, recently. He decried the manner in which the operatives stormed the area.
Reacting to the issue, the Kwara State Police Command spokesman, Ajayi Okasanmi, in a statement, recalled that four suspected cultists were earlier arrested on Friday for killing a student of the Kwara State University.
Okasanmi confirmed that the IGP team was on the trail of some cultists hiding in the area “where a similar attack was unleashed on one student, Idris Aderemi around 6am.”
“Surprisingly, the cultists who were already in ambush attacked the police team damaging the police Hummer bus and inflicting a gunshot injury on the head of one police Sergeant Adebayo Abdulahi attached to the STS team.
“In the ensuing imbroglio, students in their numbers came out to block the road and prevented the free flow of traffic and burnt tyres.
“However, two cultists, Ahmed and Musibau (Shaban) were arrested with one fabricated English pistol with 3 live ammunition, 2 live cartridges, and one pistol magazine.
“The injured policeman and the suspects have been taken to the hospital for treatment,” he added.
Meanwhile, the management of the polytechnic in a statement signed by the Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mallam Abdulkadir Yunus, has announced the rescheduling of the examinations as a result of development.
It, however, denied that the suspected cultists were students of the institution.
Similarly, the Kwara State Government, in a statement by the Commissioner for Tertiary Education, Senior Ibrahim Sulyman, has sued for calm adding that the incident had been brought under control.
He assured the students and the general public of the state government’s commitment to ensuring a thorough investigation of the immediate and remote causes of the incident, with a view to proffering a lasting solution to it.
He warned that the state government would not take it lightly with anyone found disturbing the peace of the state, no matter how highly placed.