The high crime rate in the Akerele and Atobaje neighbourhoods of the Agege Local Government Area in Lagos State has residents living there in constant fear.
On Wednesday, The PUNCH dispatched a reporter to the neighbourhood, where he learned that residents were terrified to walk the streets at night due to the presence of aggressive-looking touts who were likely under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
It was also learned that when potential criminals were under the influence of drugs, they engaged in a wide variety of criminal behaviour.
On Wednesday, locals expressed concern about the increasing feeling of insecurity to our correspondent.
A businessman who went by the name “Lekan” said that drug-using youth posed the greatest danger to the tranquilly of the neighbourhood.
Young women and men alike are smoking and wasting their lives,” Lekan warned. Parents are aware of these kids but choose not to warn them. The current pace at which these threats are spreading is extremely worrying.
You’ll see girls as young as 18 carrying all kinds of illegal substances. You are not allowed to travel through Akerele and Atobaje, two major neighbourhoods, at night.
To further reduce the prevalence of social menace in the area, he advocated for the implementation of basic community services such as street lights and robust security.
Abiodun, a local resident, has said that people are afraid to go out at night because of the possibility of being robbed or stolen from by unknown assailants.
“The rate at which the youth in this area take hard drugs in their environment is really alarming,” Abiodun said. When under the influence of drugs, they engage in a wide range of criminal behaviour, including rape, assault, and other violent acts.
“Once they start drinking, they start robbing stores and fighting locals with cutlasses and other sharp objects. There are some young people in the area who can “do and undo,” she emphasised.
Benjamin Hundeyin, the state police’s public relations officer, was unavailable for comment when we reached out to him because he was in a meeting at the time this report was written.