Armed Robbery, Burglary, Blights Lungi
Lungi community, considered as the gateway into Sierra Leone has been blighted by sprees of armed robbery attacks, cases of burglaries and daylight snatching of handbags both from commuters and visitors coming into Sierra Leone, Sierra Express has been made to understand.Â People of Masoila community at Lungi, who Sierra Express talked to, rendered their dismay at the rate at which armed robbery, burglary and other petty crimes have saturated their community, casting a heavy smog of insecurity both for residents and visitors -mostly people using the airport.Â
A security person attached to the Lungi International Airport, who asked not to be named, expressed concern over the state of insecurity gripping the Lungi community saying,”the airport itself is no longer safe considering the spate of armed attacks that have proliferated the entire Lungi community.” He related that on the night of Wednesday16th September 2009, armed robbers attacked Masoila environs close to the Airport, carting away cash, money, and property amounting to hundreds of millions of Leones, according the victims of the attack.
A police officer dealing with the case related to Sierra Express that investigations show that the robbers had settled for a while in the communities, made a thorough study on the places and people of the communities, and moved in on them in a calculated way. Talking to the community people, they confirm that they had observed strange young men in the community and raised concern with the police and community leaders but that the reports were not taken in good fate until the robbers executed their carnage on the lives and property of the people.Â
One of the victims referred to is Mr. Ernest who is a social worker, and his family, who are presently undergoing medical treatment due to the butchery meted out on the them by the robbers who also carted away property worth millions of Leones and cash money that was to be used to pay children’s school fees as well as salaries meant for payment of workers the following day.
Another angry and despondent victim related that the robbers use crude weapons such machetes; axes, cooking knifes, and locally manufactured guns by blacksmiths backed by a few AK-47s.
The people blamed the police for being unable to protect their lives and property; some even opined that they could be guilty or behind some of those insidious acts. In a similar development in Freetown, the capital of the country, an increase of armed attacks on homes at night has led to the formation of vigilante groups in various parts of the city for community protection; the groups claim that the police can no longer protect them.
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