Operatives of the Lagos State Environmental and Special Offences Unit, also known as Lagos Taskforce, have arrested 16 alleged miscreants over the violence that broke out at Oshodi-Mile 2 expressway on Tuesday.

According to a statement by Maliki Moliki, the spokesperson of the task force, the suspects are “believed to have masterminded the violence and robbing of commuters in Iyana Cele and Iyana Isolo.”

Mr Moliki said the alleged miscreants capitalised on the peaceful protest embarked upon by drivers of commercial buses on Oshodi – Mile 12 Expressway on Tuesday, to unleash mayhem on commuters.

The Nation had reported a protest against the Lagos State Taskforce by road transport workers, including thugs wielding machetes and knives on Tuesday.

The drivers reportedly protested against the routine and indiscriminate seizure of their vehicles by Taskforce officials, for which they allegedly pay huge sums before they are released.

The protesters, who set up bonfires on the expressway inward Oshodi, prevented vehicular movement in the area, leaving many passengers stranded.

Speaking on the incident, Mr Moliki said the drivers decided to protest the installation of road signage on roads that used to be bi-directional as One-way, in addition to other grievances.

He said the 16 suspects were arrested molesting passersby and destroying public facilities.

The suspects are Lekan Fatai, 29, Tosin Ajakaye, 32, Sakiru Lanre, 38, Lekan Salaudeen, 36, Hakeem Oyetoro, 47, Daniel Adeojo, 38, Ramon Moshood, 30, Lekan Nureni, 37, Okolawon Oluwaseun, 39, Olajide Qudus, 24, Uchenna Idima, 28, Dada Hamid, 23, Tega Monday, 28, Rafiu Pelumi, 20, and Wike Odigbi, 27.

“Recovered from the miscreants were machetes, charms, cudgels and other harmful weapons,” Mr Moliki said in the statement.

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He added that the task force chairman, Shola Jejeloye, a Chief Superintendent of Police, was in the area to maintain law and order as well as listen to some of the aggrieved protesters.

Mr Jejeloye called for calm and assured the aggrieved drivers that the government would address their grievances.

“He (Mr Jejeloye) added that no official of Lagos State Taskforce operates between Toyota and Mile 2, adding that the agency is presently rejigging its optoorder to prevent reported incidences of illegal Taskforce operatives in the metropolis,” the statement contained.

He assured that the agency would look into genuine complaints made by the drivers and treat them accordingly.

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