Following the bloody clash between members of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) and a notorious gang identified as Herald gang within Ibadan metropolis which resulted in the death of some people, the leader of OPC in Oyo State, Mr Rotimi Olumo has confirmed that three of his men were killed during the fracas.
There are contradictory casualty figures while the crisis which engulfed places like Oopoyeosa, Inalende and Abebi lasted. Some claimed that 11 people were killed, while others said it was only four people that were killed. Two bodies were found.
Olumo who said his men did not kill anyone said alleged that it was one Jalaruru that led the attack.
According to him, the violent clash started when gang allegedly robbed some motorcycles. But, the robbers were traced to their hideout and the matter was reported at the Mokola Divisional Police station.
Olumo said, “The OPC boys involved are our boys. We only heard of the matter midnight Thursday. The Herald boys gathered around 12midnight (Thursday) that our boys called that the Herald boys since Sunday had been terrorising the area snatching phones, robbing and stealing motorcycles and they are youths from Oopo.
“But, in the evening the gang attacked the house of one of our men named Olodo who built a house in Oopo and the member had a narrow escape. But after he escaped, he called our men to go and help him rescue his wife and children and that was how another round of fight started”.
“In the fight, we didn’t know where and how the gangs got their guns, they fired shots at our men and attacked our men in their homes. They knew they won’t be able to face them collectively at the midnight after burning their houses.
“The gang attacked our boys and they shot three of our men namely Akin Aluko, Quadri Omitola and Opeyemi.
“They were rushed to the hospital, but by day break Friday, two of them had died. The third person is in still in coma. It is under probability. That was what the thugs in Oopo and Inalende did overnight”.
“But, I have appealed to our boys to be law abiding and not engage in reprisal as a law abiding organisation. I told them to allow the police to take up the matter. I have ordered all my boys in the vicinity to vacate their area so that they won’t be provoked.”
“But, I learnt that the gangs are still threatening that they will still attack our men but you know that if they attack them, our people will have no choice than to defend themselves.”
On possible retaliation, “I am not aware of that and I have not been informed. We are just after those in the hospital so that they can get adequate medical attention.
“I have begun my own investigation and I haven’t heard that our men killed seven of the gang members. I haven’t got that report. But, before midnight, if it is true, we will confirm and I will get back to you.” Olumo said.
The state Police Command through its Public Relations Officer, DSP Adewale Osifeso confirmed the crisis but declined to give casualty figure noting that he was yet to be fully briefed.