The Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) has said it did not burn down the house of notorious Fulani herdsman, Iskilu Wakili, after he was arrested on Sunday.
The OPC also said no one was killed when ten of its men carried out Wakili’s arrest, adding that Wakili and three of his accomplices were immediately handed over to the police in Igboora.
Oyo State Police Command had in a statement said that it detained three OPC members for allegedly burning down Wakili’s house and killing an unidentified woman in the process.
But in an interview with The PUNCH on Monday, Adedeji Oluwole, the OPC sector coordinator who led his men and other vigilante groups to arrest Wakili, said the allegations of arson and murder by the police were untrue.
Asked whether his men burnt down Wakili’s house after the arrest, the OPC leader said: “We don’t know anything about that. After we arrested Wakili, we left the scene. We had no idea whether the house was burnt or a woman was killed. It was last night that we read the news that a woman was killed at the scene of the incident.
“We arrested Wakili and three of his men. Nobody touched them. We were not there to kill anybody or to burn the house.”
He called on Yoruba leaders to come to the rescue of his men, saying it is unfortunate that the police resorted to hunting his men after arresting the notorious Fulani herder while Wakili was moved to the hospital.
“My boys are still in police custody but we call on Yoruba leaders to come to our rescue because these boys are innocent; they know nothing about these allegations. Up till now, they have not taken them to court and they are still in their custody. Even I myself, the police have been chasing me and I’m shocked because I have not committed any offence,” he said.
Before his arrest, farmers and residents of Ayete, Kajola and neighbouring Communities in Ibarapa area of Oyo State lived in perpetual fear of Wakili, who was accused of displacing them from their farms, kidnapping their rich men for ransom and raping their women.