Ogun Residents Lament Robbery as Police Shun Station




Armed robbers and other perpetrators of criminality in Ogun, South-western part of Nigeria appear to be having a field day in some parts of the state with questionable police interference. 
 
File Photo
 
Residents of Ijoko-Lemode, Itoki, Mosa, Robiyan and Ibaragun in the Ifo Local Government Area of Ogun State say the communities are overwhelmed with robberies, cult clashes and street fighting.
 
They said due to the remoteness of the communities to police stations, they raised funds, built a storeyed-building police post and requested that policemen be posted there to curtail crimes.
 
The dwellers, however, lamented that entreaties to the Ogun State Police Command to deploy operatives in the station had proved abortive, two years after the ground floor of the facility was completed.
 
A correspondent, who visited the station on Thursday, observed that the ground floor had a Divisional Police Officer’s office, a counter, and seven other rooms, including male and female cells and a toilet.
 
The Chairman, Ijoko-Lemode Community Development Committee, Alhaji Abdulwasiu Oliyide, said it took residents six years to put up the structure, but the police had not shown interest to take over the facility.
 
He said, “Thugs, robbers and cult members are many in our communities and police stations are far from us. That was why we initiated a plan to build the police station six years ago. There is no security.

“We have been to the state police command in Eleweran, Abeokuta, and some officers from the Agbado division came to inspect it two years ago. We have been expecting the command to give us policemen since then. This is a project we have spent millions of naira on to ensure safety of lives and property.”
 
A resident, Olabiyi Moses, who decried the spate of crimes in the communities, told a correspondent that workers, who go to work early in the morning, were usually robbed and molested.
 
He added that hoodlums thrived on the distance of police stations from the communities to perpetrate crimes.
 
He said, “The crime rate in our communities is on the increase. When people go out early in the morning, they are robbed and at times, women are molested. Cult members strike at will, making people to run helter-skelter.

“The two police stations we call during any incident are Agbado and Sango divisions. But by the time policemen arrive, they (the hoodlums) will have dispersed. Two years ago, the police inspected the structure and gave us some specifications about the cells and offices.

“We were also told to change the entrance from the roadside to the fence area, do a septic tank, and a borehole; we have done everything. But up till now, all our efforts have proved abortive.”
 
A community leader, Alhaji Ogundipo Lasisi, said a committee had also visited the office of the state Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, on the issue to no avail.
 
“We are just being promised and our communities are not secure. If the police are on ground, these criminals will reduce,” he added.
 
A landlord, Solomon Oladipo, appealed to the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to wade into the plight of the residents.
 
Oladipo said, “Four years ago, we cried out in a peaceful demonstration to the Commissioner of Police in Ogun State. The then Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, was sent to address us.

“If there is anything to do to uplift the structure to a police station standard, we appeal to the IGP through the CP and the state governor to come to our aid and put the structure to the taste of a station and deploy policemen.”
 
The Ogun State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the place would be inspected by the Area Commander in charge of the communities, adding that the command would act accordingly based on his recommendations.
 
He said, “There are certain criteria that a building for a police post must fulfil before policemen can be deployed there. The Area Commander will write a report to the CP and he (CP) will go there to inaugurate it. Then, our men will be posted there.”

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