Schools and markets were shut down in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital on Friday as residents are afraid of possible attack ahead of the June 12 celebration.
Daily Trust reports that, as early as 12 pm, residents flooded markets in Ibadan to stock food for fear of June 12 crisis while other residents are afraid of going out on Saturday.
Our correspondent reports that many residents, who spoke with Daily Trust have decided to stay in-door on Saturday because of fear of attack on residents by protesters.
A resident of Agodi, Mrs Adejoke, told Daily Trust that she had decided not to go out on Saturday because of the anxiety in the town.
“I am not going out. I have heard so many things about June 12 protest and I don’t want to be a victim.
“I want to advise you to also stay at home,” she said.
‘Just a rumour’
The Oyo State Police Command has described the news of a possible attack in the town as a mere rumour, asking people to go out on their normal daily routine.
A statement by the police spokesman, Adewale Osifeso, said the Commissioner of Police had deployed policemen across the state, saying the police would deal with troublemakers in the state.
The statement reads; “Oyo State Police Command’s [attention]…has been drawn to series of baseless assertions making the rounds, suggesting the influx of suspected herders into the State with specific references to Akinyele, Ona-Ara, Oluyole, Monatan, Akobo and Egbeda areas where series of gunshots were allegedly heard at different times.
“The rumour mill also span towards Ido local government area, sharing boundaries with Ibarapa North and East local government where some strangers in their numbers allegedly believed to be herders stormed the community leading to closure of schools and business activities.
“Following the above, the Commissioner of Police in due diligence had hitherto deployed intelligence assets across the nook and cranny of the state, especially those areas reportedly troubled, which in turn has produced facts that negate the above assertions.
“Consequent upon this, Oyo State Police Command wishes to refute these unfounded tales, aimed at promoting panic, apprehension and instigating violence in the state.
“While promising the citizenry that the security architecture of the state remains undisputedly firm and fortified daily with various security upgrades, the Commissioner of Police enjoins the members of the public to desist from the act of promulgating unverified news as this is a counterproductive measure in the course of birthing a peaceful Oyo State of our collective dreams.
“Oyo State Police Command in collaboration with other sister security agencies, on Friday 11th June 2021, embarked on a show of force across the nook and cranny of the state, with the purpose of asserting presence, availability and readiness to deal decisively with any peace threatening advances.
“Consequent upon this, the Commissioner of Police wishes to appeal to stakeholders, principal actors, parents, guardians and heads of various religious sects, to use their influence to advice against acts that would unnecessarily heat up the polity.”