There was confusion on Thursday at the Seven-Up bus stop, in the Ijora area of Lagos State, after suspected hoodlums clashed, shutting down business activities in the community.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the fight began on Wednesday evening after a 24-year-old man identified as Sodiq, a.k.a Always, was stabbed to death.
He was said to be a truck loader in the Ijora area.
Our correspondent, who visited the scene of the incident on Thursday, learnt that Sodiq was going to see a friend who owed him money, when he was attacked by a six-man gang and killed.
A resident, George Jumbo, told our correspondent that the deceased was a member of the Oju Ina gang and was killed by rival cultists from a neighbouring street.
He said, “It was around 6.30pm. Always (Sodiq) was going to collect money from a friend when he was cornered by the gang. They had been monitoring his movement. He was caught unawares.
“The cultists surrounded him and stabbed him in the chest and by the side of his body. He died on the spot.”
Another resident, who claimed to know the deceased, Moses Kolawole, explained that Sodiq’s friends carried his corpse, but later released it to the police after the intervention of a member of the National Union of Road Transport Workers.
“His friends took his corpse from the spot he was killed and brought it to a place we call Janjara in the community.
“Late that night, the police came and demanded his corpse, and the boys refused. But one of us, Taranta, asked the boys to release his body to the police,” he said.
PUNCH Metro learnt that after releasing the corpse, boys from Oju Ina went on rampage.
A cab driver, Ahmed Aweda, said he was seated in the park when the area boys struck and he fled along with his colleagues.
He said, “I don’t know exactly what happened or what led to the clash which began yesterday (Wednesday) after I heard somebody was killed. The area boys that evening were wielding guns and cutlasses and we all took to our heels.
“This morning again, around 10, the hoodlums pursued one another into the Badia area and we all lost our peace. The police later came to disperse them.”
A motorcyclist, Tajudeen Alao, said the hoodlums used the opportunity of the chaos to steal and rob passersby.
He said, “The government knows what to do if they want to bring about peace. The politicians are the ones giving these boys firearms, or how can one explain how a jobless and homeless area boy would come about a gun?”
The traditional ruler of the Ijora community, Oba Fatai Aromire, when contacted, said he was not aware of the development.
But the Police Public Relations Officer, Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed the incident.
“Sodiq was stabbed to death and we have commenced investigation. We cannot categorically say why he was killed, but we are working to get to the roots of the matter,” he said.
Meanwhile, calm has returned to the Oshodi-Isale area of Lagos State after the mayhem of Tuesday and Wednesday, which left no fewer than four people dead.
Our correspondent, who visited the area on Thursday, observed that although the police still had their patrol vans and armoured tanks on ground, business activities had resumed.
There was also free movement of people around the area, and commercial buses had started loading passengers, including Bus Rapid Transit vehicles.
Around 1pm, some members of the NURTW were sighted by our correspondent holding a peace talk with drivers at the under-bridge and Mosafejo Motor Park.
When our correspondent approached a man, said to be the head of the NURTW committee, he declined comment.
“I am too tired and cannot say anything to you,” he said.