By Ismaeel Uthman
A total of 210 public and private properties and businesses were vandalised and looted by hoodlums in the looting spree of Friday and Saturday, October 23 and 24 across the State of Osun.
The looting, which compelled a 24-hour indefinite curfew before its relaxation by Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, occurred in 14 different local government areas of the state.
According to investigation by OSUN DEFENDER, 46 ministries, department and agencies, local government secretariat complexes were attacked and looted by the hoodlums.
About 97 private businesses and establishments and 67 personal homes were also looted.
Some of the looted MDAs are: Osun Health Insurance Scheme, Omoluabi Holdings, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Ministry of Home Affairs, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and Osun State Agricultural Development Programme (OSSADEP).
Private businesses that were affected include TUNS Farms, Ayegbaju Market, Leventis Stores in Ilesa, Senator Adelere Oriolwo’s farm, among others.
Speaking with OSUN DEFENDER, the Secretary of the Ad-hoc Committee On Looted Properties, Mr. Samson Owoyokun, said the level of damage recorded in the looting could not be quantified and valued at as the time of filing this report, saying most people affected were still in a state of shock, disbelief and in trauma.
Owoyokun said: “What happened was totally unexpected, but what can be said about the damage is that it is highly devastating, totally destructive and a major economic and financial setback for everyone that was affected.”
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Special Duties said based on the official complaints, 14 local government areas ‘were terribly and adversely affected by the mindless and wanton looting’.
He described the response of the people to the amnesty given to the looters by the governor a week ago as encouraging, saying ‘the looters actually responded though that is not what we represent, or who we are as Omoluabi.
“In many instances, the looted properties were dropped on many access roads, notable junctions, palaces of traditional rulers, religious worship centres, radio stations, though we still have stubborn and unrepentant looters. And sadly, though very unfortunate, some properties were badly damaged and vandalised and cannot be repaired again.”
Owoyokun said the recoveries across all the 14 local government areas have been massive.
According to Owoyokun, the government has recovered 97 freezers and refridgerators, 79 motorcycles, 143 ceiling fans, 131 standing fans, 115 generators, 46 air conditioners, 32 printers, 38 stabilisers, 1141 plastic chairs, 40 executive chairs, 23 executive tables, 103 TV set, 13 overhead tank, 10 toilet sink, 24 mattress, six INEC ballot boxes, 17 fire extinguishers, nine UPS, 33 grinding machines, 10 old motorcycles, 26 pumping machines, 57 bags of fertilizers, 94 swing machines, seven water dispensers, 14 wheelbarrows, eight vehicle number plates, 14 mats, eight electric kettles, three DSTV decoders and many other items.
“We must acknowledge the creative approach Governor Oyetola introduced to ensure people don’t suffer total loss on their properties. This initiative by the Governor has actually given a lifeline opportunity for some people to come back to businesses, and from records available, Osun is the only state where amnesty was given with unprecedented recovered looted items and properties”, Owoyokun submitted.