Following the alleged murder of Yusuf Mubaarak, an online journalist, in Ilorin, Kwara State capital, a pro-democracy group, Kwara Must Change, has called on the people of the state to lead the initiative to end the menace of cultism in the state.
The group said every household and neighbourhood knows the cultists in their midst, urging them to turn the cultists in for their own good, instead of watching them kill and be killed too.
Yusuf was declared missing on Wednesday while his corpse was found at Unity Road area, Ilorin on Saturday.
In a statement by its convener, Abdulrazaq Hamzat, the group said that the gruesome murder of Yusuf, popularly known as Authority, should be a turning point in the state’s response to cultism and associated insecurity.
Hamzat said every insecurity in the state is directly or indirectly connected to cultism, adding that the menace is not only affecting those involved in the unholy secret cult but also innocent members of the public such as Mubarak and we must jointly put an end to this menace once and for all.
“This should be the last time cult-related killings should be happening in Kwara, and the duty of making this a reality is our collective responsibility,” he said
He noted that every household and neighborhood knows the cultist in their midst and they should no longer sit back and watch them kill themselves and others, but instead, should turn them in to the security agencies.
“The era of harbouring cultists should be over and anyone found shielding or harbouring cultists should be treated as such.”
“All community heads, market leadership, school authorities, religious leaders, community associations etc. should develop a modality of cleaning up their environment by mapping all the cultists in their neighbourhood and turning them in,” Hamzat said.
The state Police Command had in a statement signed by SP Okasanmi Ajayi, PPRO, two weeks ago, confirmed the murder of three people in Ilorin which he said was linked with cult-related activities in the metropolis.
Okasanmi said the recent activities of cult groups had resulted in the death of about three people believed to be members of opposing cult groups in Idi-Ape, Gambari, Babooko and Surulere areas of the state capital.
“The Kwara State Police Command wishes to assure the good people of Kwara State, especially residents of Idi-Ape, Gambari, Babooko and Surulere areas of the metropolis, that the command is doing all within its powers to put a stop to the recent activities of suspected cultists, which have resulted in the deaths of about three people equally believed to be members of opposing cult groups.
“To this end, the command has commenced aggressive raids of black spots, stop and search, and a total clampdown on motorcycles and tricycles operating outside the time permitted by the law, which is between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily.
The command, however, warned parents and guardians in Ilorin, the state capital to check the movement of their children and wards to avoid areas prone to Cult attacks in the state.
He said that the warning became necessary as the Police would embark on raids of black spots in areas where cult attacks were prevalent in the state.
“These measures are put in place to contain the activities of these deviants.
“Anyone found committing any crime, regardless of its nomenclature, would be arrested and prosecuted.
“For any emergency or assistance, the command could be reached using the following phone numbers:08126275046, 07032065901, please”, the police said in the statement.