A breakdown of order has been reported after police officers opened fire at a bus-stop in Ogun State, killing at least a young man and causing injuries to an unknown number of others.
The shooting occurred at Iyana Coker area of Ifo, a market community on the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway. It occured around 4:30 p.m., according to witnesses.
Akeem Akinsanya, a 25-year-old man, was reportedly killed, according to his uncle, Habib Lawal, who said he witnessed the incident.
Mr Lawal, who said he is widely known in the community as ‘Obasanjo’, said the plainclothes officers were in the area to arrest a man.
“They came to our area in a red Mazda 323 around 4:30 p.m. to arrest a man,” Mr Lawal said. “They arrested the man, but they started shooting into the air as they were about to drive away from the area.”
It was the sporadic shooting that led to the death of Mr Akinsanya and severe injury of many others. The injured were taken to the hospital.
Mr Lawal said the officers were arrested on the spot and were still being held at the police station in Ifo as of 7:45 p.m.
“We are all here to ensure that the police officers did not run away,” he said.
The officers were said to be of the Zonal Intervention Squad of Zone 2 Police Command.
Mr Akinsanya was a motorcycle electrician before his death, his uncle said, adding that the family had been mourning the loss.
Irate residents have taken to the streets to express anger about the killing, which comes as the country reels from multiple shootings of unarmed citizens by police officers.
The Ogun State police commissioner, Bashir Makama, told PREMIUM TIMES he was aware of the incident, and the officers suspected to be responsible have been arrested.
“They are from Zonal Intervention Squad, but I have ordered that they should be arrested in Ifo and brought to Abeokuta for disciplinary action,” Mr Makama said.
The incident comes barely three weeks after Kolade Johnson was killed by a stray police bullet in Lagos, and a week after a young woman was shot dead while returning from a nightclub also in the commercial capital.
Both incidents were investigated by the police and the officers responsible were summarily recommended for dismissal.