The Coordinator of the Oyo State Security Network Agency in the Surulere Local Government Area of the state, Mr Olu Oladipo, has said the Divisional Police Officer, Orile Igbon Division, Ayodeji Adepoju, fired 16 bullets at his men who were at the station to secure release of Amotekun corps arrested by police from the division.

The Amotekun coordinator said this in an interview with journalists in Ibadan, the state capital, on Saturday.

The Amotekun corps had gone to arrest some herdsmen who reportedly grazed their animals on a cassava farm and destroyed crops. But while at the Fulani settlement some policemen came and arrested the Amotekun corps and detained them.

The coordinator said he sent some of his older operatives to the police station for discussion on how the arrested security agents would be released, adding that the DPO immediately came out of his office and shot at the men, claiming he overheard them talking about how to kill him.

Oladipo said, “He fired 16 bullets at my men and after that, he reloaded the gun and pursued one of them. The bullets didn’t have effect on others except the operative whose bone was shattered. I do not understand why he behaved the way he did. Nobody would have believed us if the bullets did not injure any of my people. But I thank God the injury is not a life-threatening one,

“The police collected some of the expended bullets. But what we want is that they should release the guns and charms collected from them by force.

“The police lied by saying 30 Amotekun operatives invaded the station. Only seven of them went and their guns were not loaded because they didn’t go there to fight but to secure the release of those arrested.

“The DPO must be one of those working against the success of Amotekun. That was why he did what he did. But they have released our men that were arrested. We wanted to get the impounded motorcycle because it is government’s property but they said they would bring it.’’

The coordinator said the injured operative was now in a stable condition at the Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso, where he was rushed to for treatment.

Meanwhile, the Commandant of the Amotekun in Oyo State, Col. Olayinka Olayanju (retd.), noted that the injured operative with gunshot injury would be operated upon to extract the bullet lodged in his body.

He said, “He is still on admission at LAUTECH. He will be operated upon to remove the bullet lodged in his body. He (DPO) used an AK-47 rifle on them but we thank God they are alive.”

But a rights group, the International Society for Social Justice and Human Rights, has called for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the DPO.

Speaking with Sunday PUNCH about the incident, the group’s Chancellor, Jackson Omenazu, said apart from arresting the trigger-happy cop, he should be prosecuted for attempted murder.

Omenazu said, “The DPO should be immediately arrested and charged with attempted murder and unduly inflicting grievous harm on a fellow citizen. We have got to a stage where the herdsmen menace is pushing Nigerians to the edge.

“The DPO has displayed overzealousness and ignorance with his action. He may have some masters he wants to placate, otherwise he is not ignorant of the law that the state government passed a law permitting the Amotekun Special Corps to arrest criminal herdsmen causing confusion in the communities.

“If the DPO is saying that Amotekun was not established to arrest killer herdsmen and armed robbers, what other function was the security outfit set up to perform? The governor of that state should ensure a diligent prosecution of that DPO.

“The Oyo State Attorney General should take it upon himself to prosecute him immediately. He (DPO) must be punished according to the law.”

He noted that other DPOs and policemen would repeat similar acts if nothing was done to punish Adepoju to deter others.

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