Protest Rocks Ondo Over EFCC Arrest of Groom, 127 Suspected Internet Fraudsters

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Youths in Akure, the Ondo State capital, have protested the arrest of 127 persons suspected to be internet fraudsters, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, operatives at the weekend.

Recall that security personnel raided two nightclubs in the metropolis , arresting a groom-to-be and his friends who were at one of the clubs for a bachelor’s eve. Vehicles, telephones, and laptops belonging to the fun-seekers were reportedly confiscated during the early morning sting operation.

The protesters stormed major streets in Akure metropolis, expressing their displeasure over the anti-graft agency’s action. They marched to the governor’s office in Alagbaka to show their grievances and called for the release of those arrested.

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Speaking with journalists, their leader, Oluwaseun Ogunmola, said the raid by the anti-graft agency was against its ban on night operations. Ogunmola demanded that those arrested and profiled as internet fraudsters in the Akure clubs be released unconditionally.

Another leader, Tobi Akinnubi, said, “In Nigeria now, youths cannot use phones, laptops, or drive cars without being seen as fraudsters by the EFCC. Our ladies have been taken away; did they commit any offense? This is pure brutality.

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Enough is enough; we must put an end to this”, Akinnubi said, urging the Federal Government to look into the matter.

The protesters complained of brutality by EFCC personnel during the night raids.

Secretary to the State Government, Tayo Oluwatuyi, and the Youth and Sports Commissioner, Saka Yussuf-Ogunleye, who addressed the protesters, commended them for the peaceful protest. He informed them that the state governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, had waded into the matter.

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Meanwhile, the Ondo State Commissioner of Police, Abayomi Oladipo, has called for calm over the weekend’s sting operation by EFCC operatives. Oladipo stated that the State Government and the Inspector-General of Police have been informed and were taking steps to address concerns without prejudice. (Vanguard)

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