The Patriot Institute of Journalism and Arts (PIJA), Lance Magazine is a public-centric independent media organisation dedicated to fighting injustice, fostering social justice and community development through the telling and retelling of the marginalised-oriented stories.
SPECIAL REPORT: Three Years Without Commercial Banks, Nigerian Community Still Wait
This is a special report on the unheard pain of some Nigerians, unnoticed for decades. Conducted by Enoch Oyedibu for PIJAlance Magazine, the report is into a three-part series and is published for three days. This is the third and final part of the series and it focused on Iree, a town under Boripe Local Government, Osun State.
AUGUST 5, 2021
On August 5, 2021, the residents of Iree, Boripe Local government, woke up to a distasteful event — armed robbers stormed the major banks in the community, carted away millions and killed a police constabulary.
Despite the police station located in between both banks, the armed robbers, about 30 of them, triumphed and even shot a police officer known as Kay, in the police station, dead.
Kay, a police constabulary identified as Abdul-Jelili Aladeokin bitten the dust while fighting as a lone attacker of the armed robbers. Other police officers ran away.
Among the police, it was only Abdul-Jelili that didn’t run away and waited to fight against the robbers, whose several shots at him became powerless. In the end, their strength triumphed over his, probably, because of the number difference and he was killed with a rod being smashed on his head.
Abdul-Jelili, popularly known as Kay, was a compatriot with no issues. Sadly enough, it was not up to a month since he joined the police force, also, not up to a month, after his brother, joined the Nigerian Army and died, as well.
Another report had it that the armed robbers came, a few minutes after a bullion van arrived to UBA with some cash.
Iree joined the league of communities within the axis with no commercial banks on August 5th, 2021. Though, the robbery inferno about the same time later got extended to ravage Iragbiji banks—the hometown of the former Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola; some banks are now operating in Iragbiji but in Iree, none yet.
Several interviews with the people of the community show a similar experience with the Ikirun residents. Many of the POS operators charge a higher price while all of them have to travel to Osogbo, almost every day for cash withdrawal.
Many market women and men are not collecting transfer, giving students of Osun State Polytechnic, and residents a hard time making a purchase.
“Most time some of us bank on those petrol stations to have cash,” a student told Oyedibu.
Meanwhile, both United Bank for Africa and the Access Bank formerly robbed in the community have been renovated. But none has been opened, even their Automated Teller Machines are not loaded with cash.
Attending to the greatest needs of the Iree, Ikirun and Ada communities in Osun State would be, if not the greatest, the best achievement for Ademola Adeleke, the incumbent Governor of Osun State. Hopefully!