Several students were reportedly injured and three vehicles destroyed when two secondary schools in the Meiran area of Lagos clashed on Friday after closing time.
Residents were said to have summon up courage to disperse the teenagers, who reportedly wielded cutlasses, knives, axes, bottles and other weapons.
According to PUNCH, a resident of the area, who identified himself only as Babatunde, said that one of the pupils apprehended by the residents was handed over to the police.
He said the student told the police that he is from a school in Mulero, a neighbouring community, and was invited by one of the factions for assistance in the fight.
Babatunde stated, “After closing time on Friday, pupils from the two schools were coming from different directions and met at Imulokanle junction. They were brandishing cutlasses, axes, knives, bottles and other weapons and they started attacking one another. They were more than 200. Many of them were injured. They also destroyed property. They vandalised three vehicles and even wanted to enter houses. Some residents rose against them and chased them away. It was a terrible situation; small children for that matter.”
He said after dispersing the pupils, some residents reported the case at the Meiran Police Station but they were asked to pay N5,000 for mobilisation to the scene.
Babatunded added, “One of the landlords had to call the DPO (Divisional Police Officer) before some policemen came here. They just looked around and left. A pupil they arrested said he was invited from a school in Mulero by one of the factions. If I had packed my car on the street, they would have destroyed it too.”
PUNCH reported that another resident, Salami Adedeji, said the factional pupils had been at loggerheads for about two weeks over what he described as a suspected cult war.
He said, “They usually fight on Fridays after closing from school. They smashed bottles on the street. Nobody knew what actually led to the clash but it appeared to be a cult clash.
“As we were trying to stop them, they started throwing stones and bottles and destroyed some vehicles in the process. We recovered some weapons from them and took them to the police station.
“Surprisingly, the policemen we met asked us to pay N5,000 before they could act on the matter. Aside from the boy that was arrested, I learnt one pupil was admitted in a hospital.”
The State Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Adekunle Ajisebutu, who confirmed the clash, said operatives were promptly deployed in the area and normalcy was restored, adding that two vehicles were damaged and one suspect arrested.
He said the claim that N5,000 was demanded from the residents at the station “is not true; it is falsehood.”