May 30, 2012 – The battle for supremacy between the Eleku Family of Oko-Oloni in Ibeju Lekki Local Government area of Lagos State,Southwest Nigeria, and the Elemoro Family, on Monday assumed a dramatic turn as a group of villagers resisted an attempt by a four-man team of armed policemen to help a land speculator to take over a plot of land.
The police team, led by Inspector Samuel Jonathan, Sergeant Ayiku FN2242522, Corporal Onogun Ogbeifu FN359098, had gone to give protection to a contractor erecting a building on the disputed plot of land. All the four policemen were armed with AK 47 assault rifles.
A heated argument then ensued between the villagers and the policemen, until Chief Olufemi Bakare, a leading member of the village, appeared on the scene and restored order. The policemen later left in the vehicle they brought for the operation marked FH 738 KRD.
Speaking with reporters, Bakare revealed that the land in dispute is a subject of litigation in suit No.M/381/2012, Tajudeen Eleku and others versus Commissioner of Police Lagos State and others and that the court had already issued a restraining order for the status quo to be maintained.
Said Bakare: “The police are major defendants and our main complaint was the excessive use of the police to harass and intimidate us. The Area Commander, Mr. Felix is a party to the suit, the DPO of Elemoro Police Station and Oba Tajudeen Elemoro are all parties. It is therefore appalling that the police, that are aware of the pending case and the order from the court, should allow themselves to be used in this matter.
“The Inspector-General of Police has warned repeatedly that the police must not get themselves involved in land matters, but the police at Area ‘J’ will never learn. I have already instructed my lawyer to file contempt charge against them,” Bakare stated.
However, at Area ‘J’ Command, a senior police officer who asked for anonymity, said nothing like that happened.
“We are not aware of the incident, We have warned our men not to get themselves involved in such things,” the officer said.