The Lagos State Government has suspended the Baale of Shangisha, in the Magodo area of the state, Chief Yusuf Ogundare, for allegedly faking his kidnap.

PUNCH Metro had reported that the baale was kidnapped on July 5 on the Centre for Management Development Road, in the Ikosi-Isheri Local Council Development Area. However, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday said the kidnap was a lie, approving the immediate suspension of the baale.

In a memo with reference number, OLGAS.83/S./Vol.1, dated July 13, 2017, addressed to the Sole Administrator of the Ikosi-Isheri LCDA and signed by the state Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs, Teslim Folami, Ambode directed Ogundare to stop parading himself thenceforth as the baale of the community.

The memo read in part, “I am directed to convey to you the approval of His Excellency, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, of the suspension of Chief Yusuf Ogundare, baale of Shangisha, with immediate effect in accordance with Section 38, Subsection 1 of the Obas and Chiefs Law of Lagos State, which states that ‘the governor may suspend or depose any oba or chief, whether appointed or after commencement of this law, if he is satisfied that such suspension or disposition is required according to customary law or is necessary in the interest of peace and good government.’

“You are to communicate the decision to the chief to stop parading himself as the baale of Shangisha with immediate effect.”

Ogundare’s suspension was approved by the governor shortly after the Lagos State Police Command paraded him along with his younger brother, Mohammed Adams, for conspiring to fake the alleged kidnap.

The state Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, explained that Ogundare was apprehended by men of the Rapid Response Squad in the Alausa area on July 11, after he was “dropped in a suspicious manner” by a car which sped off immediately.

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“He sold a dummy to policemen that the kidnappers dropped him off, but unknowingly to him, it had been found out that on July 5, the day he was allegedly kidnapped in Lagos, he was seen driving around in Ibadan, Oyo State. He went to Ilorin, Kwara State; and he went to Iwo, Osun State.

“And unknown to him, Adams had confessed to helping him fake the kidnap. The objective of the suspects was to falsely accuse the oba of Shangisha as the brains behind the kidnap and embarrass the state government.”

Also speaking, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Adeniji Kazeem, who demanded the unconditional release of the six pupils kidnapped from Igbonla Model College since May 25, said it was disheartening that while the government and security agencies were working to secure the release of the children, the baale deemed it fit to raise false alarm.

He said Section 5 of the Lagos State Anti-Kidnapping Law prescribed that “a person who overtly or covertly puts himself forward to be kidnapped or abducted by another for the purpose of extracting money or ransom, from another or for any other reason, commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to 14 years’ imprisonment.”

He said, “Let me sound a note of warning that we have zero tolerance for crimes against the state. No matter how high you may be in the society, you can be assured that we will bring you to justice if you commit a crime.”

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