By Dayo Johnson
Akure—OKADA riders in Ondo State, yesterday, arrested five suspected ritualists in an uncompleted two-storey building used as their hideout in the Government Reservation Area, GRA, in Akure.
The GRA is located at Alagbaka in Akure metropolis.
An hanger used for torturing victims was discovered in one of the rooms in the abandoned building located beside the Gani Fawehinmi Arcade Ground along Igbotoro Road.
Meanwhile, there were different versions on the activities of the suspects as some alleged that they were cultists, while others said they were kidnappers.
Vanguard gathered that six of the suspects were in the hideout, but only five were arrested while one escaped.
Women underwears, cooking utensils, cans of soft drinks and bottled water, spoons, buckets, mattresses, toothpaste and toothbrushes, among other items, were discovered inside the building.
An eyewitness claimed that one of the security men attached to a nearby office shot at a bird and the gunshot scared the suspects out of their hiding.
The suspects, who taught the gunshot was from policemen, rushed out and fled in different direction, but some motorcycle operators, popularly known as Okadamen, plying the road went after them and arrested five.
But for the timely intervention of policemen, acting on distress calls from notable personalities living in the GRA, the suspects would have been lynched by youths and Okadamen.
The suspects have been detained at the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, office after they were rescued from the scene.
Unconfirmed report claimed that the building was originally owned by a retired judge in the state, but later sold to a businessman who changed the design and started reconstructing the building into a hotel.
According to a source, the new owner of the building stopped work on it following complaints by the landlords, who opposed having two hotels on the same street.
The complaint reportedly made the owner to stop work on the building in the last three years and all manner of persons with questionable characters have converted it into their hideout.