By James Ibechi
Ikorodu area of Lagos is, again, in the news. It is not about the activities or onslaught of oil bunkerers or vandals. The area is under siege by a dreaded cult group, Badoo, which has continued to elude the Police and other security agencies in the area.
Is the Police helpless? Do they need the help of other security agencies to stamp the activities of these hoodlums out, like the oil bunkering days? Or are somehow involved because Nigerians know how effective they can be if they want to be? These are the questions begging for answers as this cult group continues to run amok in Ikorodu communities.
Wednesday, June 28, 2017, suspected members of the dreaded Badoo cult struck again in Odogunyan, Ikorodu, Lagos. They attacked four buildings, leaving three people dead, one missing, one seriously injured and one other escaping death by the whiskers.
The incident occurred at 9, 10, 11 and 12, Aliyu Adesanya Street, Olopomeji Bus Stop, at about 3am. However, the fatalities were recorded at 9, where a family of five was attacked.
According to eyewitness accounts, David Ikehi’s family, who lived in a rented apartment at No. 9, were last seen on Tuesday night, but around 4am, a male neighbour, identified as Baba Chukwuemeka of No. 10, raised alarm that he escaped being hit with a grinding stone by an unknown person, who accessed his building through the window. Baba Chukwuemeka’s shout for help reportedly caught the attention of co-neighbours, who rallied round for support.
Jamesibechi.com learnt that while this was ongoing, another shout was heard from No. 9 and people rushed there only to discover that the door leading to the apartment of Ikehi’s landlord was fastened with copper wire from without, and sympathisers had to break the door to rescue the landlord.
Further discovery in the compound revealed that the Ikeh’s family were the main victims of the attack. David Ikehi, his wife Priscilla, and their children, were killed with a grinding stone. Another son, Sunday, was injured, while their two-year-old boy was missing. The bodies lay in their pool of blood, while Sunday was unconscious with a blood-stained grinding stone found in the premises.
Apart from houses Numbers 9 and 10, two other buildings were also attacked without any fatality, Policemen from Sagamu Road Division were invited to the scene and the injured taken to the hospital, while the dead were taken to the mortuary.
By dawn, the incident had attracted a mammoth crowd, Department of State Security Services, DSS; Police and Military personnel. In anger, the crowd started throwing pebbles at the security officials, shouting and demanding for thorough investigations into the killings and attacks in Ikorodu and its environs. Yesterday’s attack was the second in five days.
Earlier strike by the Badoo Boys in Ikorodu ended the life of a family-a man, his pregnant wife and two children. One of the children, suspected to have been raped, was rushed unconscious to the hospital.
Jamesibechi.com gathered that four members of the gang stormed Israel Olusanya’s home at Itamaga, Radio Area of Erunwen at 1am. in a black SUV. The 46-year-old Olusanya was a farmer, while his wife was a teacher.
The assailants gained entry into the apartment through a window, smashed the Olusanya’s heads with a grinding stone, ripped the pregnant woman’s womb open and removed the foetus. A resident, who claimed to have seen them leaving the building, disclosed that the killers wore hoods.
At the bungalow, erected close to a canal, a relative of the deceased, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, described his brother’s death as unfortunate, adding: “My brother, his pregnant wife, Oriyomi, and two children—Wale, 10, and Semilore, five—died.
“We found the first daughter unconscious and naked, with a black cloth tied round her head. She is still in the hospital as I speak. They used grinding stones on them and nothing was removed from the house to indicate they were robbers.”
Another resident, Olagunsoye Oribami, said: “What happens in a community where constituted authorities cannot provide security? What could his pregnant wife have done to warrant such ill-treatment? “His two children killed with a mortar. It is so sad to see that Badoo gang has not been neutralised. What is the function of police in Ikorodu, when they cannot give us peace of mind?”
The remains of Olusanyo, who hailed from Ikorodu, was buried in his compound yesterday, while those of his wife and two children will be buried today. Describing the family as a peace-loving, a resident revealed that 40 persons have been killed by Badoo Boys so far , calling on security operatives to step up, with a view to bringing the perpetrators to book. Some of them accused some traditional rulers in the area of sponsoring the group.
Following the recent killings in Ikorodu, especially the killing of the family of five by suspected members of the dreaded Badoo Cult, the Lagos State House of Assembly had called for the establishment of police commands in Ikorodu and Epe.
Raising the issue under matter of urgent public importance at its plenary, Majority Leader, Sanai Agunbiade, from Ikorodu Constituency 1, lamented the security threats in the area. Referring to the recent killings of a family of four in Ikorodu by Badoo group, Agunbiade said the incident started in Ibeshe.
“They descended on a house in Erunwe last week, killed the man, ripped open the pregnancy of his wife and also killed their two children. The security agents find it difficult to deal with them. I received a call this morning that a member of the gang was arrested by a vigilante group. He was kept in a solitary place and people lynched him before the police could get there. Four boys were recently killed in the area as they were suspected to be members of Badoo cult group. The cult members attack new sites, where the people don’t have enough security”, he said.
The Majority Leader then called on the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni to intensify security in Ikorodu and Epe areas of the State. Moreso, the police was called upon to expose the sponsors of Badoo cult groups and other criminals in the area.
The Speaker of the House, Mudashiru Obasa, sympathised with the people of Ikorodu over the incident and the people of Epe over the kidnap of six students in the Model College in Igbonla, Epe. According to him, such an incident ought not to occur, when there is a government in place. Obasa stated that everything must be done to end the menace, and that the government should be proactive about the matter. “We once called on the Governor to site Police Command in Ikorodu and Epe to stop the activities of these hoodlums. The community members should work with the police to give them information so that they could help us,” he said.
Jamesibechi.com’s findings reveal that the dreaded Badoo cult may have started within the Ibeshe communities of Ikorodu. Since the June 2016 deadly rape and murder attacks by the group, the people of the area have continued to live in palpable tension.
The fear of this group, which specialises in attacking houses where women and their children stayed alone and has a culture of cleaning the private parts of their victims with handkerchiefs while also inflicting injuries on them or in some cases, stabbing them to death if they resisted, has continued to give the residents ceaseless nightmares while many have been abandoning the communities in droves to a safer abode.
This serial rape attacks have become regular affairs in many communities in Ibeshe area, and despite the fact that some of the perpetrators had been caught and another one lynched by the irate residents, the rape attacks have continued unabated, which made many residents to believe that Badoo is more of a clique of deadly rapists rather than a one man gang.
Moreso, the residents of the affected communities were reported to have accused the police of complicity due to the allegation that each time suspects were apprehended, the police would dissuade residents from meting jungle justice on them, only for the police to free them later to continue their nefarious acts.
Although, both the traditional leaders and the joint Community Development Associations of these communities have made several concerted efforts to curtail these sad incidents, the strategies being employed by Badoo in carrying out their illicit acts seem too difficult for the community people to foil while several S.O.S (save our souls) messages sent by them to the Lagos State government and security agencies are yet to yield any positive intervention.
A chronicle of the atrocities by the Badoo group of villains in Ibeshe axis of Ikorodu include- the raping and murder of Grace Ebina Isiome, a teacher at Methodist Primary School, Ikorodu on June 5, 2016; the raping of 60-year-old woman, Fransisca on July 9, 2016 and blinding her 10-year-old daughter, Marvelous.
On May 29, 2016 by 2a.m, an 86-year -old woman was raped by the rapists and she ended up in the hospital. She was discharged after five days. According to them, the incident was reported at the Ipakodo police station. Also, a Ghanaian lady named Grace was raped and brutalised around 3a.m on Sunday, June 5, 2016 by the same gang, and she later died in LASUTH, which prompted the Ghanaian High Commissioner to visit the area twice.
In the letter, which was signed by the Secretary of the Joint CDA, Ibesheland, M B A Ogunlana and Chairman, Okeota Joint CDA, Pastor Adelakun Abayomi, they accused the high profile people in the area of sponsoring the evil that was going on and plotting to release the culprit, Badoo.
Following these incessant attacks by the Badoo cult, it was learnt the people have started moving out in great numbers to other more secure areas until peace, law and order are restored, as many businesses have either been relocated or grounded.