The Nigeria Police Force has arrested and will soon charge to court 12 suspects connected with the torture of three women at Oba Morufu International Market, Ejigbo, Lagos, southwest Nigeria.
Two of the victims, who were young girls, were arrested along with their mother, tortured and dehumanized by persons who claimed to be members of Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) providing security at the market, and some market association officials who subsequently extorted N50,000 from the father of the victims in return for their freedom.
One of the victims, Juliana Agoma, a national of Republic of Benin, was moved back to Cotonou by her father where she subsequently died allegedly from injuries sustained in the torture.
The suspects include: Isiaka Waidi, the Baba-Oja of the market, said to be the mastermind of the dastardly act which culminated in the arrest, debasement, torture and extortion; Haruna Abdullahi and Buhari Yusuf who mixed the concoction of pepper and alcoholic spirit that were applied on the bodies, including the private parts of the victims.
Others include: Saheed Adisa, Lateef Tijani, Ahmed Adisa, Oloruntoyin Dauda a.k.a Iya-Oja, Adenkule Adenuga, Jimoh Busari and Azeez Akinosun.
It will be recalled that earlier this year, the Inspector-General of Police, Muhammad Abubakar had, in view of his concern towards ensuring the speedy delivery of justice in this case, ordered the immediate takeover of its investigation by the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS), Force Criminal Investigation Department (Lagos Annex) from the Lagos State Police Command.
Consequently, a team of crack detectives led by DCP Chris Ezike swung into action and conducted discreet investigations in line with standard best practices, during which the suspects in connection with the matter were arrested.
The Police have also declared wanted the following suspects: Tiri, an alleged member of OPC who was captured in the video footage and alleged to have stripped naked one of the victims, Ajoke Agoma, mother of the two other female victims in the presence of her husband, Otepa Oluronti, Akeem and Machael Abolore whose whereabouts are yet unknown but who have been implicated in having played active roles in the heinous crimes against the victims.
Meanwhile, the IGP has commended the human rights, civil society, and women support groups as well as the Office of the Public Defender, Lagos State Ministry of Justice and all other stakeholders whose important contributions have tremendously assisted the Police in this and other matters relating to human dignity, safety and security.
He however calls on the general public to assist the Police with information that will lead to the arrest of the fleeing suspects.