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We didn’t partake in Saraki’s property demolition — Police

Kwara State Police Command has denied sending its officers to demolish the structures on the revoked land of the late Dr Olusola Saraki carried out by the state government on Thursday.

The command in a statement on Saturday signed by its Public Relations Officer, Ajayi Okasanmi, also denied that its men fired live ammunition at aged women during the demolition.

The command in a statement on Saturday signed by its Public Relations Officer, Ajayi Okasanmi, also denied that its men fired live ammunition at aged women during the demolition.

Popularly called Ile Arugbo (home for the aged), the house was located along the Ilofa Road, Government Reserved Area, Ilorin.

The building was a place where the late Saraki used to distribute food, money and clothes to old women.

However, the property – which became a subject of controversy in the last few days – was demolished around 4am on Thursday by security agents of the state government.

Men of the Nigeria Police Force were alleged to have first taken over the property 48 hours before the demolition to forestall the breakdown of law after some aged women protested against the state government’s decision.

The statement read, “The command wishes to make it clear that as part of its safety and crime prevention strategies in ensuring hitch-free celebrations during the Christmas and the New Year, police patrol vans were stationed at strategic points across the state, including Ilofa Road, GRA, Ilorin on December 31, 2019, being the New Year’s Eve.

“As was witnessed by all the Christmas and New Year celebrations were generally peaceful throughout the state. Our anti-crime deployment during this period had nothing to do with any demolition exercise in the state.

It is, therefore, shocking to the (state) Commissioner of Police to hear the news of policemen shooting life ammunition and firing teargas canisters at the scene of a demolition.”

The police said no policeman was deployed for any demolition exercise anywhere in the state and that none deployed for anti-crime duties during the Christmas and New Year celebrations fired a single shot of ammunition or canister during the period.

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