*By Emmanuel Edom*
A 31-year-old member of a notorious armed robbery gang, Olatunde Adetunji, which specialised in robbing bank customers, within Ikeja and Isolo areas of Lagos State, have been arrested by the operatives of the Inspector General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team, IRT.
Also arrested, was a 54-year-old woman, Bashirat Akinmushire, alias Area Mama, who is a member of the Eyie Confraternity in Isolo area of Lagos state and she was also allegedly said to be a member of the gang.
Our correspondent gathered that Adetunji, who is also a member of Eyie Confraternity, ran into trouble recently when he led some members of his gang to attack a middle-aged woman, a sales girl, on her way to the bank at Opebi area Ikeja and dispossessed her of her money and cell phone.
Adetunji was then arrested few days later, when the woman, whose identity wasn’t disclosed, sighted him on Toyin Street Ikeja, while he was planning to rob an unsuspecting passer-by and she raised an alarm which alerted operatives of the IRT who raced to the scene and apprehended Adetunji.
He was said to have confessed during interrogation at the IRT, that members of his gang normally carry out their operation, which includes armed robbery, and cult related killings within Lagos State and he added that the guns are normally kept with a member, who he said resides at Isolo area of the state.
Police sources disclosed that in an effort to recover Adetunji’s operational rifle and pistol, he led them to a market in Jakande Low Cost Housing Estate in Isolo area of the state, where Area Mama was arrested and she told the operatives during interrogation that guns were no longer in her possession as she had given them to another senior member of the gang known as Junior a.k.a Jungle.
The source added that when Area Mama was asked to take the operatives to Jungle’s house, so they could arrest him and recover the guns, she misled them and took them to a wrong location, where she also attempted to escape.
She was said to have ran into a ditch in the process and sustained serious injuries which made the operatives to stop their search for jungle and she was later taken to the hospital.
When our correspondent interviewed Adetunji, he confessed being a member of the gang and he explained that he normally pay Area Mama N5000 whenever she gives the guns to them.
“I am a member of the Eyie confraternity and I joined while I was at the university in Ogun State, but when I dropped out I came back home to join members of my cult group in Jakande estate and I discovered that they had already procured an Ak-47 rifle and a revolver pistol”.
They told me that they bought the guns from a soldier and they usually kept the guns at Area Mama’s shop, who is also a member of our cult group. She normally hides the gun at the back of her shop where she sells pepper and tomatoes.
She would cover the bag of the guns with basket and sacks. We have used guns on several operations and we use to give her N5000 after every operation. But the main job we do with the guns are to fight our opponent who are revival cult members”.
But Area Mama in her own statement, confessed that Adetunji and Jungle forced her to keep the guns for the group because she is a member of their group and she also took oaths to keep their secrets.
“I took an oath when I joined the group but I didn’t know that they will assign the duty of keeping their guns to me. I tried to protest against keeping the gun for them but they threatened to kill me, if I don’t keep the guns for them.
“Because of the oath we took together I could not tell anyone that I was keeping guns for the group. They use to come for it whenever they have an operation, but I don’t know what they use to do with the guns and after each operation they will give me N5000, but few months ago, Jungle came and collected the guns and he is yet to return it back to me. I have tried taken the police to his house but we didn’t find him in the house.” She stated.