Police IGP, Mohammed Abubakar
By Ademola Babalola
To both passers-by and residents of Soka, a satellite community of Ibadan, along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, the scene could have been right out of a horror movie. They were Saturday shocked by the discovery of human skulls, decomposed bodies and dismembered human parts in a site so close to the ever-busy arterial highway.
The circumstances leading to the discovery of the underground house of horror – known as Ajaale in Yoruba language – were still unclear at the time of filing this report. Onlookers converged around the scene in their thousands, confounded by the gory sight. Littered all over the grounds were identity cards (apparently belonging to the victims) as well as discarded clothes and shoes.
Among the unsettling discovery made in the area yesterday were containers of dried dismembered human parts. Several human parts and skulls littered the scene corroborating the allegation that people were being butchered here. Some bodies were also discovered in deep dried wells, where their captors could have dropped them.
A derelict factory building in the area was suspected to be where the captives were slaughtered and sold in parts to their clients. This was corroborated by bloodstains on the floor and what could have been wooden slaughter slabs.
About 18 emaciated males and five females, chained on their legs, were also freed from captivity in the site. Among the captives freed from the gory abode of horror was an aged woman, who was kidnapped and kept in the dungeon since 2008.
Another female captive, said to have been delivered of a baby early Saturday but the infant was sold, was also released with bloodstains on her. Asked how she found herself in the area, she managed to utter a few words and then fainted. There were also about nine captives lying on the ground, too weak to speak.
More skulls, bones and dismembered parts were discovered in the neighbouring bush. Also discovered were open graves, where bodies were dumped.
It was gathered that the forest was a market of sorts for human parts with buyers visiting the area at night. Eyewitness accounts confirmed that many high-profile people usually patronised the area especially at night. A source also revealed that some Fulani herdsmen had often been seen in the area grazing their cattle.
One Akeem Isiaka, 38, was arrested at the scene and taken away by security agents to Sanyo Police station.
When contacted, the Oyo State Police Command spokesperson, Mrs Olabisi Clet-Ilobanafor said some arrests were made Saturday, but the prime suspect is still at large. The police spokesperson also said some security personnel have been detailed to cordon off the scene to prevent people from taking the law into their hands.
It would be recalled that a cobbler was in June last year arrested for the alleged murder of a commercial motorcycle (known as Okada) operator of Northern Nigerian extraction in the Soka area.
The cobbler, Kazeem Bamidele a.k.a. Kazzy International Shoe Works, was arrested with human parts. The police, who had reportedly taken him to the shack, which served as his workshop, discovered the decapitated head and dismembered legs of the victim hidden inside a bush behind the wooden shop.
Bamidele was said to have been apprehended with an accomplice in the act by two members of a vigilante security outfit by around 1 am. The security men were suspicious of their late night activities and had interrogated them.
Nothing has since been heard of this case after the suspects were taken into custody by the police.