At least nine Department of State Security (DSS) personnel were on Wednesday killed by suspected vandals, with others taken hostage at Arepo, Lagos.
The security operatives met their untimely death after they were alerted that the hoodlums were siphoning Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) at Konu, a border town between Arepo and Ikorodu.
Although the incident happened between 8:00pm on Tuesday and the wee hours of Wednesday, details about it were still sketchy at the time of filing this report
The DSS was reportedly brought into the picture following the inability of the police to curtail the resurgence of pipeline vandalism.
The security agents were on their way to nab the criminals when they were ambushed and gunned down.
The killing of the DSS agents was one of several murders of security operatives, including six policemen and some military personnel by the criminals in the past two weeks.
A source who spoke in confidence said that two Hilux vehicles were used to carry corpses of the security operatives from the creeks by a joint team of military and civil security agents.
He stated the civil police had to approach the military for help, particularly the navy because their gun boats and expertise were required to flush out the criminals.
He said the vandals who appeared to be well armed and battle ready, have been laying ambush for security agents who dared to disrupt their business.
Asked why the DSS operatives were engaged in safeguarding of pipelines, the source said it was due to lack of confidence in the police ability to curtail the activities of vandals.
“DSS personnel have for some time now been deployed to monitor pipelines and arrest vandals.
“It is not the first time they will be engaged in it. In fact since the military was asked to stay off internal security unless in the northeast, and the OPC contract terminated, these criminals have overwhelmed the police.
“So many security personnel have been ambushed and killed in the last two weeks by the criminals who usually take their bodies into the creeks and bury them in shallow graves.
“The police and NSCDC have not been able to enter the creeks, they fear for their lives because those criminals are well armed and have informants,” the source added.