Femi Makinde, Osogbo
Worshipers at the Divine Victory Evangelical Church of God Gospel Ministry last Sunday escaped death by a whisker as hoodlums armed with guns and other dangerous weapons invaded the church, beat them up and injured some.
Our correspondent gathered that one of the youths at Isale Agbara in Ita Olokan area of Osogbo where the church is located was seen defecating very close to the church and was challenged by some of the worshippers.
The youth was said to have left the place in anger and went and mobilised some hoodlums who were armed with guns, cutlasses and other weapons. The hoodlums, on getting to the church, unleashed terror on the worshipers during service. The incident happened on Sunday January 31st, 2016.
Some of the youths in the church were said to have engaged the hoodlums in a fight but they were overpowered and some of them were reportedly injured by the hoodlums.
A resident of the area, who identified himself simply as Taye, told our correspondent in Osogbo on Saturday that the service was disrupted as most of the worshipers fled the scene of the incident after about 10 of them had been injured by the rampaging hoodlums.
He said, “I heard that one of the area boys went to defecate close to the church and he was chased away by the church members.
The boy was said to have gone and brought some of his colleagues to come and attack the church.
” Some of the church members were injured by the area boys but the arrival of the officials of the National Security and Civil Defence Corps prevented the hoodlums from destroying the church completely and even killing some of the worshippers.”
The Head, Public Relations and Protocol Unit of the NSCDC in Osun State, Mr. Wale Folarin, confirmed the incident while speaking on the telephone with our correspondent.
He said seven of the attackers were arrested and weapons including a locally made gun were recovered from them.
Folarin said, “The timely intervention of officers and men of the Civil Defence prevented the fracas from escalating.
“Hoodlums and other trouble makers are warned not to jeopardise the peace being enjoyed in the state. Anybody caught will be severely dealt with and those on the run will soon be arrested.”