The police in Oyo have warned members of the public to desist from actions that could ignite violence in Ibadan, the state capital.
The warning came after the violence that trailed the outing of the Oloolu masquerade in some parts of the city on Tuesday and Wednesday.
In a statement made available to journalists on Friday, the Police Public Relations Officer, Mrs. Olabisi Clet-Ilobanafor, said that the police would not condone any act that could frustrate efforts at guaranteeing the peace and security of lives and property in the state.
The statement read, “The police command will like to use this medium to warn intending troublemakers to desist forthwith as any act of disturbance of public peace will not be tolerated.
“Similarly, members of the public are reminded that the constitution of the country permits freedom of worship, hence nobody should prevent or interfere with the religious belief of another.”
The statement said distress calls, which were made to the state police headquarters on Tuesday, claimed that the Oloolu masquerade was being attacked at the Popoyemoja area of Ibadan by some hoodlums.
“Upon receipt of the information, policemen from the Mapo Police Division moved to the scene where the custodian of the Oloolu masquerade was rescued and rushed to Bembo Hospital for treatment.
“Four suspects were found in possession of various weapons and arrested. On July 4, the state police command got distress calls from members of the public claiming that Oloolu and his followers were preparing to storm Popoyemoja for a reprisal,” the statement said.
It said that the police arrested some hoodlums in connection with the incident.
The statement said, “The police have the right to arrest anyone who commits an offence no matter his religious affiliation. It should be noted that the laws of our land are supreme and nobody is above the law.”
It added that contrary to a previous rumour, nobody died in the masquerade saga.