AKINYELE KILLINGS:Before They Overpower Us
Not less than five lives have been terminated in Akinyele Local Government Area of Oyo state in the last one month. These deaths have happened from sexual assault where the rapist kill the victim to a young child who was playing at the backyard and was killed. The big question lingering on people’s mind now is; if there is a killing in Akinyele, is she/he on the run? No less than three ladies have been raped and killed in that same local government within the space of two months according to their autopsy report. Grace Oshiagwu, Shomuyiwa Azeezat and Barakat Bello were all rape and murdered in cold blood in the same Local Government and we have not had any reaction from the powers that be in Government. In Nigeria, we take stories of killings with a pinch of salt thus we’d rather chant and trend hashtags in faraway United States than in our own locale.
In a show of taking the matter seriously, the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Mr Nwachukwu Enwonwu and two of his assistants relocated their offices to Moniya, an area in the dreaded Local Government. Except the police intentionally wants to keep their investigation a secret, no arrest has been reported in the media space. In fact, no less than two lives have been lost in that Local Government since the CP’s relocation earlier this month. Mujeeb Tirimisiyu was macheted to death while another woman whose name was not ascertained as at the time of this report was killed according to Business Day.
The intention of the relocation of the CP was not stated but one very obvious fact is that relocation of the boss has little to do with the investigation and bringing the culprit to book. When the COAS came him, he promised to relocate to Borno, the epic center of the Boko Haram operations in Nigeria. This did not stop members of the insurgent group to stop their activities of killing innocent civilians, touching down houses and reducing communities to naught. The only justification for the relocation of the Commissioner is borne out of our Nigerianness. We are a cluster of people showing off to really taking the necessary action. The police chief should not limit this fight to mere rhetorics. If the power of the unknown assailant is overwhelming the police force, government should be counseled accordingly to declare a state of emergency in that Local Government area.
In all honesty, members of the Nigerian Police Force in Oyo state have ensured and maintained relative peace and calm across the state. So to conclude that a set of armed personage would overwhelm them in a Local Government will be far reaching. However, we need more than verbal assurance to ensure that these culprits and perpetrators of these dastardly acts are on the run and the arms of the law will soon catch up with them. The police should also look into the local communities members domiciled in that LGA and explore their usefulness. The Police Public Relations Officer should feed members of the community back on the update of their investigations. This is not to wither the investigation, it is to assuage the fears of members of the community and to build better trust in the operation of the police.
Members of the public should also desist from frustrating the effort of the police force in curtailing crime and bringing the perpetrators to book while we await a saner and more peaceful Local Government Area.
Yusuf Akinyemi writes from Ibadan.