Men of the Ogun State Police Command on Tuesday battled suspected kidnappers during an attack on commuters travelling on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
According to PUNCH Metro the gunmen, who were dressed in military camouflage, attempted to abduct passengers in an 18-seater bus.
The vehicle was reportedly heading for Lagos from Ibadan, Oyo State, when the incident happened.
Our correspondent learnt that the gunmen stormed the road from a bush before the Sagamu Interchange and started shooting at the bus.
The passengers and the driver were said to have scampered for safety, as some hid under the bus.
However, the intervention of policemen in the area foiled the attack.
A video taken after the incident and obtained by our correspondent showed people writhing in pain on the ground.
He said, “We (passengers) were only lucky to escape the gunmen, but many of us have been injured by the bullets and our bus has been badly damaged too.”
Another video showed a man who survived bullet wounds.
He said, “I thought I was dead, having been shot by them. They faced our vehicle, shooting at us; we all lay down except the driver, who was the target. They thought we were all dead and retreated into the bush. The joint patrol team of police officers from Ogun and Oyo states arrived at the scene later.”
The Ogun State Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the attack, adding that the police foiled it.
The police spokesman, however, said he was not aware if any passenger was injured during the incident.
He said, “The report sent to me by the DPO, who was on ground, did not indicate that any passenger was shot.
“The incident happened yesterday (Tuesday); our men that were there engaged them and they foiled the attempt to kidnap people travelling on that road. The policemen engaged them and even some of them escaped with bullet wounds.”
Recall that suspected bandits in military camouflage attacked travellers at the Sat Guru Maharaji Garden, Ibadan end of the expressway, on October 27, abducting five persons and killing several others.
Among the kidnapped victims were students of the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun State, and a former Deputy Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Adigun Agbaje.
One of the victims, Aminat Taiwo, later said her father paid N3.2m to the kidnappers before she and her friend were released.
A security expert, Jackson Ojo, said the frequent attacks by kidnappers in the South-West showed they had penetrated every state.
He said, “I think our government should wake up and have the political will to attack these people and comb every part of Nigeria at the same time.
“Let there be raids on these people simultaneously so there won’t be any escape route or haven for them again.”