By Femi OLAOYE, Investigator Correspondent, South-West Zone/
*Ogebni Aregbesola flanked by Prions officials during visit to the Correctional Center after the attack…
IBADAN- INDICATIONS have emerged that the attackers of the Abolongo Correctional Center in Oyo State were not the conventional gunmen but those armed with sophisticated weapons including GPMG and dynamites.
Prison sources said the gunmen numbering over 50 with about 6 coastal buses stormed the Correctional Center and opened sporadic gunshots in a commando manners with little resistance from security operatives, felled two of the security men, a soldier and Policeman before moving into the premises proper and blew opened the iron bars with concentrated dynamites.
According to sources, while the bombardment lasts, a few warders who were on ground while the blood thirsty assailants arrived took to their heels scampering to safety adding that they later stormed the Awaiting Trial Men ATM Cell where the also blew opened the iron gates and liberated the inmates numbering 837. The attack is was told lasted for about 45 minutes after which the attackers sauntered into their waiting vehicles and zoomed off.
Speaking to CrimeWorld magazine online, spokesperson to the Center, Anjorin Olarewaju said it was the Medium Security Custodial Center that was invaded adding however, that the reason for such horrific invasion had yet to be determined. He said, “At about 2130hrs on Friday 22nd October, 2021, the Abolongo Medium Security Custodial Centre Oyo State came under heavy attack by a yet to be identified gunmen. The invaders were said to have arrived the Centre heavily armed with sophisticated weapons and after a fierce encounter with officers on guard, gained entrance into the yard using dynamite to blast the wall.
While all the awaiting trial detainees were forced out of custody, the cells housing the convicts and the female inmates were not vandalized and in the process set free 837 inmates in the awaiting trial cells. A total of 262 of the escapees have been recaptured leaving 575 still at large.
Following the directives of the Controller General of Corrections, Haliru Nababa, the State Controller, Noel Ailewon has commenced the process of search and recapture after visiting the scene of the incident. He assure that no effort will be spared to recapture the fleeing inmates even as he solicit for credible intelligence to aid Security agencies in tracking down the fugitives.
Continuing Alarewaju added, “TheOyo Custodial Centre was established in 2007 with a capacity of 160 inmates but at the time of attack, had a total population of 907. Of this number, awaiting trial persons were 837 representing 92% with just 64 convicts.”
Already, sources hinted further that a rather rattled Interior Minters, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola had visited the center to see the rubbles for himself remarking that the attack was targeted at rubbishing the good governance system of President Muhammadu Buhari by traducers of his administration; stressing that he had given a matching order to ensure that fleeing inmates were recaptured and returned to custody even as repair works were to being with immediate effect.
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