7 suspected pipeline vandals have been arrested in Lagos. A teenager, Adams Samson, who was one of the seven suspected pipeline vandals, caught with 113 jerry cans of petrol has said he went into bunkering to raise N4,100 for payment of his tax clearance, which he was asked to produce by his school’s management before the new session.
The 18-year-old secondary school student said without the money, he won’t be allowed to further his education.
Another claimed he is a school teacher and that he was a victim of mistaken identity.
The seven suspects were arrested by policemen from Zone 2 Command Headquarters at Owode Area, along Badagry on Wednesday at 12.30a.m. with 113 jerry cans (of 25 and 20 litres) containing Premium Motor Spirit, PMS (petrol).
The suspects include Omosebi Olorunwa, Daniel Akinwumi, Agosu Ogungbe, Sosu Elijah, Rafiu Balogun, Whesu Julien and Adams Samson.
It was gathered that other members of the gang fled the scene immediately they sighted the police, leaving behind motorcycles, 10 vehicles, including one Volkswagen with number plates Lagos, XV859KRD and jerry cans.
The zone’s Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, said the suspects will be charged to court without delay, saying the force’s current leadership will not condone any criminal act that is capable of sabotaging the ongoing economic reform of the Federal Government.
He said: “I wish to reiterate that the Zonal Command has set out structures to flush out criminals and hoodlums terrorising innocent Nigerians in Lagos and Ogun states.
“We are ready to assist other security agencies and stakeholders to solidify the security arrangement on ground before, during and after the Yelutide period.”
One of the suspects, Samson, said he took to bunkering to raise N4,100 to pay for his tax, so he can get tax clearance, which he was asked to produce by his school’s management before the new session.
The 18-year-old Senior Secondary School 1 student claimed that he does not know who his father is, adding “when I finished my Junior Secondary School 3, one of the requirements to proceed to the senior class was to produce a tax clearance.
“None of my family members was able to help me. It was difficult. I went into bunkering to raise the money.”
Another suspect, Omosebi Olorunwa, 29, who hails from Ondo State, denied that he was a vandal.
He said: “I was caught for an offence I know nothing about. I am a primary school teacher at Amoral Model School, Badagry West area of Lagos State.
“I was not involved in any bunkering.
“I took my sick father to the hospital in Benin Republic for treatment, but was arrested on my way back home. Aside being a teacher, I use my motorcycle for commercial business to boost my finances.”
For 60-year-old Agosu Ogungbe, a bricklayer, “I found out that oil bunkering was a better business, so I joined because I did not want to be idle.”