A combined team of security operatives attached to the convoy of Ogun state deputy governor, Mrs Yetunde Onanuga, repelled an attack by suspected militants in the Ibafo area of the state on Monday during a visit to communities earlier attacked by militants.
The deputy governor’s entourage comprised of the brigade commander, 35 Artillery Army Brigade, Alamala Barack, Abeokuta, Brigadier – General Mohammed Danqalis; the director of the Department of State Service(DSS), Ogun state Command, Mr Kabiru Sanni; deputy commissioner of police (operations), Mr Bello Makwashi; secretary to the state government, Taiwo Adeoluwa; commissioner for information and orientation, Dayo Adeneye; the Baale of Ebute–Ibafo, Chief Afolorunsho Balogun; the Olu of Imusin, Oba Taiwo Adebunmi Bamgbose; and five other traditional rulers.
Punch reports that some 500 metres to Ebute-Ibafo in Obafemi Owode local government, one of the communities where violent attacks had recently been carried out, security operatives advised the deputy governor not to proceed further as there was an alert of a possible attack by the militants from the creeks.
A team of soldiers, riot policemen and men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the team thereafter advanced to the community while the deputy governor and others waited for them.
But as the soldiers and the policemen approached Ebute-Ibafo, the militants fired some warning shots from their hideout. The security men immediately opened fire in their direction. The gun battle reportedly lasted for over 20 minutes.
While addressing journalists at this point, secretary to the state government, Taiwo Adeoluwa, lamented the inability of the deputy governor and other members of the team to proceed further.
As the shots rang out, Adeoluwa told newsmen on the trip that it was obvious that the police alone could not contain the militants and therefore called on President Muhammadu Buhari to set up a military joint task force in the state.
Earlier in a meeting with Adeoluwa, some traditional rulers and village heads from the affected communities pleaded with the government to come to their rescue by increasing the number of security personnel in the affected communities.