From Lucky Lawal Lagos
A Lagos State First Class traditional ruler Oba Bashiru Oluwatoyin, the Oloworo of Oworoshoki was on Thursday arrested along side his men by Policemen attached to the Special Fraud Unit SFU Milverton Road Ikoyi over alleged unlawful possession of hemp ,force entry and assault causing grievous harm to an elderly man in Lagos.
Speaking with the victim,Elder Akinola Oloruntoba said he was inspecting his land at Ifako along the Lagos Ibadan Express Road when armed men said to be thugs attacked him and his lawyer last week.
Elder Oloruntoba said he was beaten up mercilessly by the thugs and though he escaped death by the whiskers, he was left with a swollen mouth and a broken teeth.
Following the assault, he petitioned the Inspector General of police IGP Ibrahim Idris and the case was transferred to the SFU.
Narrating how he was assaulted that day , elder Oloruntoba said, “I was at home when I got information that the Oloworo of Oworo oba Tijani brought a surveyor to my land at Ifako area.
“I ran to the land five plots along the Lagos Ibadan Express way.This is a land that we have supreme court judgment delivered by Justice Oputa in our favour of DT Elanbanjo in 1986.I have all the documents on the land and I wrote a petition to the Economic and Financial Crime Commission EFCC “The EFCC invited him and two of the EFCC men came to see the land in question. Shortly after they left, thugs he hired attacked me and my lawyers
“The thugs beat me up mercilessly and I was left with a swollen mouth and a broken teeth. I have been treating myself in the hospital. I wrote a petition to the acting Lagos state Commissioner of police Edgal Imohimi and he direct the Deputy Commissioner of police in charge of State Criminal investigation department Panti Yaba but the Oba did not show up as he went to write a petition to the Xsquad Unit and they took over the case “He told me that I am from Ondo state and I cannot own land in Lagos state. I saw it as a clear case of land grabbing and I wrote a letter to the Chairman land grabber Taskforce but nothing came out of it.
Nigeria is not a lawless country where traditional rulers can use hired thugs to take over people’s land with impunity.
“The Oba built a house for his thugs close to the land. He went as far as sponsoring the thugs to break down the fence we erected. I had to erect another one. The thugs in their devious bid to scare me, went to my block molding factory and destroyed over one hundred blocks. As I am talking to you, his tipper loads of sand and gravels are on the land for him to start construction as he has written all over the bridge that he owns the land.
“This is a land I have all the documents. I have been living in Lagos for more than sixty decades and I pay my taxes here. This land is in Ifako not Oworo.I did not buy the land from him. I am appealing to the government to save my soul.”
Speaking on the arrests, the deputy spokesperson for the SFU ASP Pauline Emmanuel confirmed the arrests.
She said “The Oba Bashiru Oluwatoyin was arrested on Thursday; he came to the station and wrote a statement. Police recovered bag of hemps in his house. Four persons were arrested alongside the oba. He was granted bail and is to report in the station”.
When contacted, Oba Oluwatoyin denied the allegation. He said “I was invited by the police on Thursday and I went there to clear myself. I did not send anybody to beat an old man. The Lagos State Ministry of justice gave me the land”.