|Main gate to the hotel.|
Some gunmen stormed a hotel in Ajah area of Lagos State on Sunday, 04 Hotel, killing the owner, identified as Olanrewaju Subair, and three others.
The police authorities said one of the gunmen was killed in the operation which lasted for about an hour.
However, two people died from a fire outbreak that was caused by intense shooting in the hotel.
It was learnt that several people were injured.
Our correspondent, who visited the area, observed heavy security as policemen, attached to Rapid Response Squad, were seen patrolling the area.
All attempts by our correspondent to enter the hotel proved abortive as policemen attached to MOPOL 10, Bauchi, prevented him from going in on the grounds that investigations were ongoing.
A source, who craved anonymity, told our correspondent that there was a fire at the hotel shortly after the shooting.
He said, “The gunmen came for Subair but ended up shooting others in the process. They killed his girlfriend who was with him and then killed two other people. They then shot two others but those ones did not die.
“The shooting caused fire and two customers, who were in another room, were burnt to death. The fire continued to rage so we had no choice but to call on the fire service.”
The Director, Lagos State Fire Service, Razaq Fadipe, told our correspondent on the telephone, that his men were able to put out the fire. He also confirmed the death toll.
“We received the distress call around 7am on Sunday that there was a fire. On getting there, we were able to put it out but two people were burnt ,” he said.
It was learnt that the matter was reported at the Area J Command but was later transferred to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Ikeja.
A police source, who craved anonymity, said the gunmen were probably robbers that were on a revenge mission.
“A notorious armed robber was arrested at the same hotel sometime ago. We are working on the assumption that it was members of his gang that came to the hotel to carry out a revenge mission,” a source said.
The spokesperson for the state police command, Ngozi Braide, confirmed the attack to our correspondent on the telephone.
Braide said she could not say the casualty figure but confirmed the murder of Subair.
She however said the police were able to kill one of the culprits.
She said, “The Special Anti-Robbery Squad had raided the hotel sometime ago and had arrested the leader of the robbery gang as well as two members of the gang. The gang members at large stormed the hotel and shot the owner and some of his employees.
“The robbers told the customers at the hotel that they came on reprisals however one of the employees was able to call the police and on sighting the policemen, the robbers opened fire. The policemen shot back and one of the robbers was killed. An AK47 rifle was recovered from the robber.”
Braide said the police high command was interested in the case and the culprits would soon be brought to book.
“The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Command, Umar manko, has vowed that the robbers will be arrested.”
Source: The Punch, Nigeria