Kidnappers of Lagos monarch want N20m
By Evelyn Usman
Gunmen, suspected to be militants, who stormed the palace of a traditional ruler in Ebute Lekki community, Lagos, whisking away 75-year-old Salino Kareem, have demanded N20 million ransom for his release.
This is just as an Inspector and three others were killed in a communal clash that occurred between Ilagbo and Oriyanri communities youths during the annual Kilajolo festival.
Sixteen houses, including vehicles and motorcycles were burnt by the rampaging youths in the same area.
Information at Vanguard’s disposal revealed that the kidnappers, who invaded the community at about 2a.m., through the waterways, announced their presence with sporadic shootings.
While some of them remained in their operational speed boats, others stationed in front of the palace, while about four of them reportedly went inside and ordered the traditional ruler to quietly follow them, threatening to shoot him if he acted otherwise.
He was, thereafter, reportedly led to the kidnappers waiting boat from where he was taken to an unknown destination.
While residents were still smarting from the abduction of the traditional ruler, a clash reportedly broke out between Ilagbo and Oriyanri communities.
The warring youths were said to have used dangerous weapons such as guns, cutlasses and knives.
An Inspector, said to have attempted to contain the situation, was killed. Life was also snuffed out of two other persons.
On the monarch, sources close to the palace said that a member of Kareem family was contacted yesterday by one of the kidnappers, where N20 million was demanded for his release.
Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, visited the area yesterday, where he addressed some community leaders.
Police sources hinted that 16 persons had so far been arrested in connection with the clash.
Effort to get the reaction of the command’s spokesman, Olarinde Famous-Cole , failed as he could not be reached on his mobile line.