Thursday, February 22, 2024

Police disperse protesting youths with live bullets in Osogbo

…. Journalist, pupil hit

Uba Group

BY TIMOTHY AGBOR, OSOGBO

No fewer than two persons have been shot by a team of detectives of the Osun State Police Command on Tuesday during a protest by some aggrieved youths in Osogbo, the state capital.

Live bullets that were shot by the heavily armed policemen hit the state correspondent of the Nation newspaper, Mr Toba Adedeji and a pupil who was returning from school.

Some youths had converged at the popular Olaiya flyover in Osogbo to protest the alleged killing of a youth, Abiola Afolabi, by some policemen in the state in April.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Yemisi Opalola, had said Afolabi was an armed robber and that he had been ill while in the police custody before he was rushed to a hospital where Afolabi died.

Afolabi’s relations and some youths in the state had taken the deceased to Ilesa town where he was buried amid sobs and accusations of attempts by the police to sweep the matter under the carpet.

The mournful-looking youths had assembled at Olaiya in Osogbo after leaving Ilesa to protest alleged extrajudicial killing of Afolabi.

At about 1:00pm on Monday, some armed
police officers arrived the scene of the peaceful protest and started shooting live bullets directly at protesters.

They also descended on other citizens in the area and gave some of them a hot chase while many were brutalised.

The journalist (Toba) was shot on the right leg while a pupil, apparently returning from school, was also hit.

Meanwhile, Adedeji is now being attended to medically at the Osun State University Teaching Hospital Complex, Osogbo while the pupil was said to have been rushed to the State Hospital, Asubiaro, Osogbo, by a commercial motorcycle operator.

When our correspondent visited the State Hospital, it was learnt that the pupil had been referred to Our Lady at Fatima Catholic Hospital, Jaleyemi, Osogbo. But it was discovered that the pupil never got to the hospital.

Speaking, one of the protesters, Henry Ojo said they were peacefully protesting the alleged killing of Afolabi before the policemen attacked them and started shooting live bullets and firing teargas to disperse them.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Osun State Council has condemned the development.

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