The Aare Onakakanfo of Yoruba land and South-West Security Stakeholders Group (SSSG) coordinator, Chief Gani Adams, has revealed extensive details on the hideout of Owo Church attackers, and terrorists suspected to lurk within the forests of the south-western part of Nigeria.
Speaking on Sunday’s shooting at St.Francis Catholic Church, Owo, Chief Adams expressed suspicions on the attack being orchestrated by an international organisation due to its coordination. He then revealed that the attackers are terrorists camped in a forest at Owo; and are being fed by helicopters that occasionally dropped food for their survival.
The SSSG coordinator added that the killers were seven and had planted a bomb under the Alter, before shooting sporadically at worshippers.
‘Well, I suspect it was an attack by an international organization. It was a highly coordinated attack.
‘This is the first time we are witnessing this type of attack in Yoruba land. We have seen different attacks perpetrated by Fulani herdsmen, however, the Owo Church attack sounded unusual.
‘The information at our disposal indicated that the attackers were about seven in number and they came with explosives that were allegedly planted under the Alter of the church.
‘And immediately the bomb exploded, it was a horror as worshippers were scampering for their lives and at the same time, the attackers were shooting sporadically,’ he said.
The SSSG had raised an alarm five weeks ago on the invasion of the south-west by terrorists, so as to warn governors to secure the region, but was ignored. Chief Gani Adams further confirmed that 38 people have died from the attack, while 64 victims are still receiving treatment.
‘So far, according to the state government, 38 people were killed while about 64 others were still at the hospital. We pray not to have more casualties.
‘This attack is highly condemnable. Any right-thinking person will condemn it totally.
‘However, on the Owo Church attack, the SSSG raised the alarm about five weeks ago that some terrorists have invaded the south-west, but unfortunately none of the state governors really addressed the issues. So, what led to the Owo attack was premeditated.
‘The information we had earlier was that some terrorists have invaded a very close forest in Owo.
‘These terrorists, according to our information, have their food being supplied to them via helicopter, and the Olowo, who is the traditional ruler of the ancient town, even the state government could not flush them out of the thick forest
‘So, that tells you that they have occupied the bush to perpetrate their calculated killings,’ he explained.
Chief Gani Adams urged governors in the south-west to make adequate preparations to fight these terrorists, adding that the SSSG will play its part in supporting them to prevent another attack.