Squatters at the popular Kuramo Beach on Victoria Island, Lagos , have accused security agents deployed to evacuate them from the beach on Sunday night of looting their property and raping their women.
Some of the squatters told the News Agency of Nigeria, Tuesday, that a combined team of police, army, immigration and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) officials, swooped on them at about 1.00 a.m. on Sunday.
A man, who preferred anonymity, said the operation, which lasted about three hours, resulted in the arrest of more than 100 people, including women.
“We learnt that 10 people, who wanted to evade arrest, dived into the lagoon out of which seven were saved.We have not heard anything about the missing three,’’ he said.
Another squatter, who simply gave his name as Charles, told NAN that the “raid’’ took the residents and the operators of relaxation spots on the beach by surprise.
“What happened here on Sunday night on this beach came to us a surprise. We were busy dancing and drinking and all of a sudden, we just heard gun shots from several directions. Many people were arrested and taken away …we do not know what has happened to them now,’’ he said.
Charles alleged that some women believed to be commercial sex workers were raped by the security men while others lost valuables such as mobile phones and money.
One of the affected businessmen, Mr Bolu Ayoruke, told NAN: `’I have been doing business on the beach for 10 years, I have never experienced such a situation’’.
A senior police officer at Victoria Island Divisional Headquarters, who confirmed the raid but did not want to be identified said arrests were made.
“The raid was carried out by officers of the police, army, NDLEA and immigration service. It is a continuous exercise as the place has become a hide-out for criminals,’’ he disclosed.
The police officer, however, denied knowledge of any rape and looting during the raid.