•No, it did not happen, Govt reacts
By Olasunkanmni Akoni
Residents have expressed shock and disapproval over an incident where a young boy of about seven year-old was burnt to death in Lagos, Wednesday, for allegedly stealing cassava flakes, otherwise known as “Garri,” describing it as “barbaric.”
The alleged boy was reportedly lynched for stealing by yet to be apprehended perpetrators.
Residents who reacted to the incident have called on Nigeria Police authorities to go after the perpetrators and bring them to justice to serve as deterrent to others.
One Ms Sharon Samuel reacted thus: “If the killers of this boy are not brought to book then there is no more hope for anyone in this country. Garri seller, may be your garri is meant for ritual purpose else why should you raise an alarm that caused the death of this boy. Don’t blame Buhari but blame our wicked world. The end is more than near,” Sharon said.
Another who identified simply as Queen Chi Chi, said, “What about those bank armed robbers, what about Nigerian politicians that are busy stealing and syphoning Nigeria’s money into their private accounts, are they not thieves? Why beating the boy to death because of ordinary garri, dastardly things to do.”
Ebere Chidima, another resident, said, “Those that burnt that little boy for merely stealing garri and even those that stood by and watched the sin being committed are guilty of the same offence. Jesus Christ said; he who is without sin let him cast the first stone. “The Police authorities should go after these perpetrators of this dastardly act.”
No, it did not happen, Govt reacts
However, Lagos State Government, while reacting to the incident purportedly carried out in the state, through the state’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, urged residents, especially users of social media as a source of news and social interaction to be mindful of the source of their information to avoid spreading false and unsubstantiated materials.
Ayorinde denied the alleged brutalization and killing of a 7-year-old pilferer that reportedly happened at a certain location in Lagos being circulated on social media.
According to the commissioner, the Lagos State Police command has duly issued a statement questioning the authenticity of the story while asking for eye witnesses or anyone with verifiable information to come forward with information as the Police continue with their investigation.
“While we condemn in its entirety every form of crime and jungle justice, it is important to plead caution whenever a human life is involved. So far, there is no indication that the dastardly act being peddled on social media happened anywhere in Lagos State or that it is a recent case.
“The Police have promised to carry out further checks and will welcome every useful information, but available information at the moment does not suggest that such killing happened last Saturday at either Orile-Iganmu or Badagry. There is no any corpse that fits the description in any area being touted; just as the location of anyone with useful information to corroborate the sad tale being peddled cannot be established,” he said.