OPINION: Adesoji OMOSEBI
The old saying says; “A justice delayed is justice denied.” And if justice is denied or perverted it leads to jungle justice.
A jungle justice in a layman’s language is when a suspect is given an instant judgement either by death or injury without fair hearing in the court of law.
Few years ago there was a media war against people who took laws into their own hands, otherwise known as “jungle justice.”
In those days when a robber, a thief or a kidnapper is caught in their criminal acts, the immediate action of the mob is to bring in tyres and petrol and burn the criminal alive without inviting police authority for justice to take its course. This acts went on for a very long time until a time when some perceived arch rivals or enemies are using it against one another.
Today, people feel they are no longer secured and save under the protection of the security agents.
Some years ago, at Apakun Bus Stop, under the bridge leading to the International Airport in Lagos, a ritualist was arrested with human parts under a dungeon. He confessed to have been there for a long time pretending to be mad but when arrested he was caught with many mobile phones and human parts. He disclosed that many important dignitaries always come for human parts. That was the end of the story, till date no one heard about the case again.
In 2013, a church in Osogbo was being used for ritual purpose, when the crime was uncovered, the church was vandalised and the leadership of the church arrested. Till date no one heard about their whereabouts. The case was swept under the carpet.
Not quite long, another den of kidnappers was discovered in Shoka in Ibadan. The den became a tourist centre for all and sundry. Many obscene things like human parts, slippers, clothes littered the ground of the shrine. The ritualists were all arrested. The news that spread like wildfire died a natural death.
One would be wondering what actually happened? The answer to this question is not far-fetched. There are some powerful people at the helm of affairs who are operating hand in glove using their fellow human beings either to acquire power or for money rituals. They seem so untouchable before men but before God they will meet their waterloo.
One other reasons people took to jungle justice was the case of a popular kidnap kingpin, Evans who was arrested recently with his gangs by the police. It was one the most successful feat for the police in recent years. In spite of the confessions of Evans to the atrocities committed by him and his gang, a lawyer named Olukoya Ogungbeje and some unscrupulous elements are calling for his release. They went to the extent of taking the police to court to either release Evans or take him to court. Evans is also demanding N300million damages and an apology for the alleged violation of his rights. If he had been lynched instantly, would there be anyone to call for his release?
Since last year, we have been hearing about the dreaded cult group named; BADOO, they have killed, maimed and kidnapped innocent people. The cries of the people in Ikorodu environs had not been heeded by the government as expected. It was in the same area about six military men were killed by the militants.
The inaction of the police and relevant security agents have made the indigenes of Ikorodu to take law into their hands to protect their lives and properties. They have placed their destinies into their own hands to defend themselves against the dreaded BADOO. They have cried without any succour from those who are expected to protect them. Already, casualties have been recorded as three people were reported to have been burnt alive. I watched the obscene video clip on Facebook where three young men were butchered and roasted alive. Jungle justice. People resort to jungle justice when help is no longer coming from the arms that is supposed to protect them.
The media reported that the victims of this attack might likely be innocent as it was later discovered that one of them was a Comedian who took two Mechanics with him to repair his damaged car. It was confirmed that this young man was coming from a show where he went to entertain his audience.
To stop these ugly tide and anarchy where human lives are no longer respected and valued, the police should live up to their responsibilities of protecting lives and properties as enshrined in the constitution.
Recent incident in UNIOSUN where a 400 level student was found dead with his head chopped off close to the Campus was another series of victims of ritual killings. Three suspects were arrested in connection to the death of Shonibare Timilehin. It was reported that they confessed to “have killed Timilehin with a pestle and got his remains dismembered and subsequently roasted with the aim of using the parts for money rituals.”
Although the student were on rampage burning some cars and houses, that would be how far the case would go. At the end of everything, the culprits will secure their freedom as it used to be. If the case gets to the court we will still get a STUPID lawyer whom the godfathers of these criminals will hire for defence. When such thing happens, the people suffer injustice and the crime continues unabated.
Injustice begets violence and violence leads to absence of law and order as we are seeing today.
When justice is perverted, people take laws into their hands and that leads to anarchy.
The need for peace is the need for justice.
www.sojworld.com © July 6, 2017.