Ogun lawmaker, 5 others arrested by DSS over Sagamu cult killings

The Department of State Services (DSS) has arrested a member of the Ogun State House of Assembly, Damilare Bello Mohammed, and five others following the recent cult killings in Sagamu. 

Recall that about 20 persons, including innocent bystanders, were killed in a renewed cult war between the Eiye and Aye Confraternity groups. 

Bello, a member representing Sagamu Constituency, was arrested alongside Debbo Animashaun, Bamidele Saheed, Ismaila Onitire, Adewale Otesanya and Tobi Owoade.

It was gathered that the lawmaker elected on the platform of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) was arrested for his alleged involvement in the violence. 

Mohammed was alleged to have been providing shelter to the six fleeing suspected cultists who were allegedly fingered in the recent four days of clashes among rival cult groups in Sagamu, which has claimed eight lives. 

The state government in a statement sent to newsmen on Thursday morning, September 21, said; “The member, representing Sagamu State Constituency (1), Hon. Damilare Bello Mohammed, was alleged to have provided shelter to the fleeing cultists. A team of security operatives, in a sting operation after a tip-off, arrested the suspects in the premises of the lawmaker,” 

“Those arrested, according to sources, include Damilare Bello Mohammed aka DRE, Debbo Animashaun, Bamidele Saheed, Ismaila Onitire, Adewale Otesanya and Tobi Owoade. They are presently undergoing interrogation at the Department of State Service (DSS). Sources revealed that many dangerous weapons, including guns, were recovered from the suspects

“It would be recalled that Hon. Bello was arrested by the DSS for masterminding the violent protest that took place in February this year in Sagamu over the naira redesign policy by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). During the protest, irate youths vandalised about 10 banks and other public infrastructure.”

PDP confirmed the arrest of Bello by the secret police in a statement by the Publicity Secretary, Akinloye Bankole, in Abeokuta.

“As much as we do not object to DSS or any security agency’s investigation into the Sagamu carnage which has allegedly claimed more than 25 lives, we think that the investigation is not being conducted with optimum professionalism and sincerity,” the statement read. 

While saying nothing incriminating was found in Bello’s residence at the time of his arrest on Wednesday, Bankole alleged that “the whole thing is an orchestrated attempt to give Hon Bello a bad name just to hang him.”

“It is also interesting that the Sagamu residence of the honourable member was thoroughly vandalised earlier today by some suspected APC-enabled thugs. The same man who returned from London to Abeokuta where he raised contributions on the floor of the house yesterday (Wednesday) concerning security matters in his constituency.

“We have always held that the Sagamu killings are a direct fallout of the criminal empowerment of cultists against the people by the APC

“The onus is, however, on the DSS to rise above partisanship in its duties. The security outfit is a creation of the law and should not be reduced to a mere tool of a political witch hunt by both the governor and APC against perceived opponents.”