Residents of Soka area, where scores of decomposing human bodies and captives were discovered in a forest two weeks ago, have called on the police to beam its searchlight on the Fulani herdsmen who grazed their cattle on the land during the same period when the horror camp existed.
Commissioner of police in Oyo State, Mohammed Ndabawa, said on Tuesday that a team of forensic pathologists from Force Criminal Investigation Department in Abuja visited the site on Monday and that investigation must be completed before the camp would be demolished.
Some of the residents told our correspondent that the police must not ignore a vital link in their investigation and wondered why it had yet to speak on the activities of the herdsmen or arrest any of them, whom they described as possible accomplices.
“The herdsmen lived there and made a camp just outside the building where the captives were chained and maltreated. They grazed their cattle over the decomposing bodies every day and they shared the same environment with the alleged kidnappers.
“Why did they feel comfortable with the sight of these bodies and why is the police quiet about this possible link to all the activities and murder at the site?” asked Mr. Olabimtan Isaiah, one of the residents.
“We saw more of the herdsmen in the area and especially along the Ogunpa River bank where they rear their cattle. Most of the bodies and the building were found along that river,” added Isaiah.
Also raising the alert over possible involvement of the herdsmen was a member of the church opposite the river, Supo Olawumi, who said the police should involve the residents in their investigation.
“It is necessary for the police to listen to the people living here. They have been saying a lot of things that could help the investigation but I doubt if they are being taken seriously. Instead, they have arrested many youths and charged them to court for public disturbance.”
All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from PUNCH.
Contact: [email protected]