We became cultists, robbers in primary school –Suspects
PUNCH Metro learnt that the suspects– Abraham Nsong, Bright Chukwuemeka and Dare Adetunji– were arrested by operatives of the state Special Anti-Robbery Squad on November 2.
Our correspondent gathered that the suspects had allegedly gone to rob at Salvation Street, Oke Odan, Iyana Isashi area of Lagos, when they were apprehended.
It was learnt that one of their victims, identified simply as Eboge, sustained deep cuts on the head, while her daughter was also allegedly shot by the robbery suspects. The girl, whose name was given as Ann, was said to be recuperating in a hospital.
According to the police, the items recovered from the suspects are a locally-made gun, a pistol and three knives. Our correspondent also learnt that a member of the gang, who the police identified simply as Joshua, was still at large.
Speaking with PUNCH Metro, 21-year-old Nsong, who hails from Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, said he joined the Eiye Confraternity when he was in basic 5 at a public primary school in Badagry, Lagos.
He said, “I dropped out of secondary school because my parents died. My father had an accident, while my mother died of an illness I believe was spiritual. When I was in primary school, I joined the Eiye cult. I was then in class five.
“The reason I joined them was to just to intimidate people. We were using an uncompleted building in my school compound back then. I attended a public primary school in Badagry which I cannot recall its name now.”
Nsong, whose arms were tattooed with various animals and symbols, added that he had been invited by Joshua to partake in the operation at Iyana Isashi on the day of the incident. He said they stole expensive phones, jewellery and cash from their victims.
He said, “I had gone to Okokomaiko to smoke hemp with friends on that day. When it was about 8pm, my guy (Joshua) said there was a house we could rob. So, we moved. When we got to the woman’s house, we collected her property ranging from phones and laptops to cash. But while we were trying to escape, a crowd cornered, arrested us and invited the police.”
Also, Adetunji, 21, who hails from Ila Orangun, Osun State, said he began breaking into people’s houses in his primary school days. Adetunji added that it was Joshua who injured the woman and her daughter during their operation.
He said, “Since when I was in primary school, I have learned to rob. I was about 12 years. I took to stealing because I wanted to survive. I had fled from home and was staying with my grandmother in the Ilogbo, Ajangbadi area. My mother lived in Sango Ota, Ogun State. My father had died.
“I tore the window nets of houses with razor blades, and sneaked in to rob. I used to steal property and money. On that day, we were four in number. It was Chukwuemeka who took us to the house of the woman. When we went in at about 2am, we asked her for money and she cooperated.
“I took two BlackBerry phones, Techno Android, LG and a wallet containing N8, 000. When we were about leaving the house, the woman and her children began to scream. Joshua then became angry and he injured the woman and her daughter.”
Adetunji added that he was ready to start a new life if forgiven.
“I have gone for four operations. I got between N5, 000 and N15, 000. I robbed because I needed to survive. But now, I am very sorry and if the government forgives me, I will turn a new leaf,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chukwuemeka denied any knowledge of the robbery, adding that he had never robbed in his life.
“I had seen the boys lurking around our area in the evening, but I never joined them in the operation. It was in the morning, when the SARS operatives came, that the boys identified me as their gang member. That was why I was arrested,” he said.
The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed the arrest of the three suspects, adding that investigations were still ongoing.
“Yes, the suspects have been arrested by the police and investigations are ongoing,” he said.