No fewer than 20 decomposed bodies were yesterday discovered in what is believed to be a ritualists’ den at Soka forest in the Oluyole Local Government Area of Oyo State.
Twenty-three other people -18 men and five women including one who had just been delivered of a baby – apparently on the captors’ ‘death row’ were rescued from the bush.
Each of them looked dishevelled having been chained together for many days and denied food and any form of comfort.
Nine of them lay on the ground, too weak to stand on their feet or talk.
Human skulls and other parts littered the bush.
The nursing mother’s condition was particularly bad: she had been delivered of a baby without any medical attention a few hours before rescue.The baby was seized from her and apparently sold by her captors.
She was still covered in blood yesterday.
She was too weak even to talk.
Asked how she got into the bush, she merely stared at her interrogators and fainted.
There were several versions of how the discovery was made yesterday.
One version is that a commercial motorcycle operator had been hired by a man to take him to the bush but on getting there heard voices from a container pleading that they be rescued.
He then raised an alarm which attracted passersby.
Another is that people around the area having grown suspicious of movements around the place raised an alarm.
All over the bush were shallow graves in which mangled corpses were dumped.
Bodies were also seen in open containers and drResidents said ritualists were selling human parts in the bush.
A resident said Fulani herdsmen often take their cattle to the bush for grazing.
One Akeem Isiaka (38) was arrested at the scene and taken away by security agents to Sanyo Police station .
Also in the bush is an abandoned factory which the ritualists apparently used as slaughter slab.
On the floor was a wooded platform caked with blood as was the floor itself.ied up wells.
Some mechanics around the area confirmed that many high profile people usually visit the area especially at night to patronise their clients
When contacted , the Oyo State Police Command spokesperson, Mrs Olabisi Clet-Ilobanafor said some arrests were made yesterday, but the prime suspect is at large.
The Police spokesperson said some security personnel have been detailed to the scene to prevent residents from taking the law into their hands.
Story: The Nation