Mayhem in Lagos: Unlucky Four Killed, 27 Vehicles Destroyed in Gang War (Photos)

February 26, 2015 8:37 am

Pandemonium broke out in the Mosafejo, Oshodi-Isale area of State,
after rival groups said to be members of the National Union of Road
Transport Workers, clashed on Tuesday evening and early Wednesday.

Four people were reportedly killed, while several others were injured in
the fracas which was stopped after the intervention of security

gathered that no fewer than 15 commercial buses were set on fire, while
12 others were vandalised. Makeshift stalls in the Mosafejo Motor Park
were also torched, leaving traders in
the park mourning their losses.

When PUNCH Metro visited the scene of the incident on Wednesday, the
atmosphere was still tense as men of the Police Force and some
soldiers were observed patrolling the area. The motor park, usually
filled with vehicles, was deserted as the police armoured tanks and
patrol vans took over the space.Broken bottles, shards of glass from shattered windscreens and pebbles,
said to have been deployed by some of the hoodlums during the fight,
littered the road. Bloodstains dotted the Oshodi Roundabout, where a man
was said to have been shot dead and his corpse taken away by the
police. A vehicle was still burning as of 1pm when our correspondent
passed the area.

Around the same time, a police van manned by police officers was observed by our correspondent taking some teenagers away.

A source told PUNCH Metro that the fight involved three groups ─ Big London boys, Railway boys and Under-bridge boys.

The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the fight started
after the police ordered that there should be a stop in hemp smoking in
the motor park.

The move was said to have been supported by the Big London boys, which
brought them in conflict with the Railway and Under-bridge gangs who saw
them as an ally of the police.

She said,:

 “That was the beginning of the fight. The Railway boys and the
Under-bridge boys usually conspire to wage war against the Big London
boys which also had Olu Omo as a leading member. 

Yesterday (Tuesday), the allied gangs struck again and killed four
people. One particularly was popular here and we call him Afari. A man
was shot in the eye, another in the hand and leg. Several others are in
critical conditions in hospitals.”

Another witness, who did not identify herself, said one Idris was cut with machete in the buttocks, leg and hand.

“No one knows if he will survive the attack because his condition is critical,” she said.

When PUNCH Metro crossed over to the area where the Under-bridge and
Railway groups had their camp, he met some of the men who alleged that
the fight was sponsored by the Big London gang.

“It was around 11pm on Tuesday that they came here. They were many in
the Big London group. They had the police backing them and they want to
drive us away from here. They descended on our vehicles and set many of
them ablaze which you can see for yourself. 

They shot and injured three of our people, who have been rushed to
hospital. We don’t know why they are after us and this fight could have
been bloodier, but we decided to be calm,” a man in the group, who did
not identify himself, said.

Another member of the group, who equally declined identification, showed our correspondent an injury he sustained in his hand.

He said, “They shot at so many of us. This was where I was shot. Those
guys were many. They shot at about 100 of us and burnt many buses.”

 Some of the traders, whose stalls were burnt, appealed for government’s
intervention. Mrs. Taiwo Olajide, a mother of three and dealer in soft
drinks, said she lost all her goods to the violence.

She said, “The hoodlums set fire on all the stalls in this park. They
have ruined our business. This is where I feed my children and keep body
and soul together.”

Another trader, Mrs. Josephine Eze, said all her provisions were burnt.

Our correspondent also observed a cross-section of traders who were
seated in front of their shops, which were not affected by the fracas.

They lamented that they had not been able to operate their business since the area was cordoned off by the police.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Kenneth Nwosu, while confirming the
incident, said one person was killed, adding that the police recovered
some weapons from the hoodlums.

He said:

 “There was an attempt to breach the peace at Oshodi. The hoodlums, who
were rival members of the NURTW, engaged in a fight of supremacy over
control of parks. In the process, about eight vehicles were burnt and 10
vandalised. One person was killed. Five cutlasses and four expended
cartridges were recovered. Normalcy has been restored as adequate
security has been made to avert any further breach of the peace.”

Nwosu added that the police arrested nine suspects in connection with the crime.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Lagos State Council of the NURTW, Alhaji
Tajudeen Agbede, has said the union will unravel the cause of incessant
violent clashes in Oshodi.

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