Lawrence Nwimo, Awka
Police in Anambra have condemned the jungle justice meted on two touts suspected to be robbery suspects in Onitsha, commercial city of Anambra State.
It would be recalled that the two victims who were later learnt to be brothers were set ablaze by angry youths for allegedly collecting illegal levies in the Bida axis of Onitsha Main market. The youths were said to have captured the suspects but did not waste time to roasting them alive.
Some residents of the area claim the victims had been among the touts and criminal elements terrorising the area and harassing innocent people going about their normal businesses.
They also said their victims are usually customers, drivers and business owners, whom they most times tortured whenever they refused to give them the amount they demanded.
A video from the scene of the incident captured a lady describing the victims as touts, and at the same time, also lamenting that the punishment meted out to them was too much.
“These are touts collecting illegal levies around Bida area of Onitsha. They were being set ablaze for touting. This is not good. The punishment is too much for just touting. They are children to somebody. This is the return of Bakassi Boys,” she lamented.
The Police Public Relations Officer of the Anambra State Police Command, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu, confirmed that the victims were touts and notorious criminals who had been terrorising the area for long.
He however condemned the jungle justice meted out to them, saying that suspects should always be handed over to the law enforcement agencies for proper investigation and actions.
“The Commissioner of Police, CP Aderemi Adeoye, has condemned the act and reiterated his call for members of the public to always take criminal offenders to the nearest Police Station for necessary policing actions, particularly the conduct of appropriate investigations.
“The CP has, therefore, ordered a thorough investigation of the incident.”