Four Persons, Including A Mother And Her Two-Year-Old Girl, Lost Their Lives As Robbers Raid Two Banks In Festac Area Of Lagos
There was pandemonium yesterday at Festac town, in Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area of Lagos as heavily armed robbers, numbering about 40, raided two banks carting away undisclosed amount of money.
Eye witness account said the armed robbers, who were dressed in military uniforms, were said to have accessed the 4th Avenue, where the banks are located, in Jeeps and a pilot vehicle with security features.
According to eye witnesses, the robbers gained entrance into the banks having blown apart the security doors with suspected Improvised Explosive Device (IED).
The robbers were said to have, before they attacked the banks, driven through 23 Road and were shooting sporadically into the air which sent residents of Festac scampering for safety, the eye witness said Police response was late in coming
Though the eye witness reported many injuries, he noted that a woman was hit stray bullet on the chest as she made to escape from a nearby house. Her two years old daughter was also said to have been hit by stray bullet on her leg.
Another victim of the attack was said to be a commercial motorcycle operator who was said to have been shot on the back by the armed robbers who fired aimlessly.
According to the eye witness, the late arrival of police worsened the situation as the robbers had time to operate unhindered.
A Police team, led by Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP, Frank Mba, arrived at the scene moments afterwards.
A police officer who preferred anonymity told The UNION that “the robbers were dressed in camouflage military uniform and were heavily armed. They came about 7.30 am and they drove through the 23 road 4th Avenue to the banks.
“Although our men were few at the initial stages of the operation, the exchange of gun fire forced the robbers who were simultaneously robbing two banks to abandon the robbery operation.
“The police action equally forced the robbers to abandon the sum of N27, 715,921.70, which was later recovered by the police and transferred under armed escort to another branch of a bank located at 2nd avenue Festac for safe keeping,” the source said.
Our source further disclosed that the robbers were forced to abandon 240 rounds of 7.62mm live ammunition as they escaped through the waterfront with their already waiting speed boats.
“The road is empty at the moment. Everyone is hiding now. The gunshots were scary. They escaped through the canal and through 23 Road. The police did not show up while the robbery lasted,” another source said.
Lagos State police spokesman, Joe Offor, said the scene of crime has been cordoned off while investigation hads commenced.
Meanwhile, security around Festac and it’s environ has been beefed up following the fierce robbery.
– Xavier Ndanyongmong