Obadeyi-Ijaiye end of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway was home to a mammoth crowd on Tuesday following the discovery of a suspected kidnappers’ den in the area.Clothes, slippers, bags, among other items, were reportedly found in an uncompleted building at the end of a tunnel in the area.The crowd laid siege to the hideout from 7am till evening, during which five persons, suspected to be kidnappers and ritual killers, were accosted while trying to escape from the tunnel, which was part of a canal in the area.
Two of them were set ablaze by a mob while policemen rescued three others from the scene.
PUNCH Metro learnt that a highway sweeper with the Lagos State Waste Management Agency was on morning duty when she heard the voice of a woman calling for help from the canal.
The sweeper was said to have raised the alarm, which drew the attention of residents and security guards attached to a bank along the expressway.
The canal linked the two sides of the expressway.
A resident, Bola Salaudeen, explained that as people maintained vigilance at both sides, one of the suspects came out around 8am.
Salaudeen said, “People asked him what he was doing in the canal, but he insisted he would not say anything about his mission there. They demanded to know the whereabouts of the woman calling for help; he said he would never divulge any information even if they killed him.
“Despite the beating he got, he didn’t disclose any information. Some angry boys put a tyre on him and set him ablaze. As the fire raged on, another suspect came out from the other end of the canal. He said they were about 20 in the canal. The policemen did not allow him to say more than that before they took him away. Around 12pm, two other persons fled from the canal. People chased and caught them. They were also rescued by the police.”
A mechanic, who identified himself only as Friday, said some members of the Oodua People’s Congress eventually summoned up courage and went into the canal.
“They discovered that there was a gate in the middle of covered area of the canal. They saw another suspect there. They dragged him out and a mob set him ablaze. We believe more people are still in the canal,” he added.
Our correspondent heard a man at the scene of the incident saying the abducted woman was almost unconscious by the time she came out and was rushed to a hospital.
He, however, refused to speak further when our correspondent approached him.
But other eyewitnesses, who spoke with PUNCH Metro, said no woman was rescued.
One of them, Sumbo Kolade, said people wanted to storm an uncompleted building beside the canal after some human effects were discovered there.