Lagos State Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences, Unit, Monday, afternoon removed a two-year-old lion from a residential building at number 229, Muri Okunola Street, Victoria Island, VI, Lagos to Lekki Zoo in the state.
The lion kept in a cage, was said to be owned by an India National living in the apartment.
The removal was sequel to alarm raised by a neighbour to the the Indian residence to authorities of the presence of the lion in the neighborhood considered as highly dangerous to the people in the community.
Confirming the report to Vanguard Newspapers, Chairman of the state taskforce, Chief Superintendent of Police, CSP, Yinka Egbeyemi, said that the lion was removed at about 1.pm and relocated to Lekki Zoo in the state for proper care.
According to Egbeyemi, “There is no cause for the alarm to the people living in and around Muri-Okunola, V.I as men of the agency and officials of the relevant state ministries evacuated the lion successfully.
Egbeyemi, however, said the Indian who owns the lion has been invited for questioning.
“Administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State will not condone any act inimical to the security of lives and property of citizenry,” he said.
The evacuation of the lion which had been put under strict surveillance by men of the Nigeria Police Force deployed to the area to prevent the animal from causing any harm, led to terrible traffic jam in the area.
In a statement by Head, Public Affairs Unit of the state task force, Adebayo Taofeek,
“The operatives of the Lagos State Task Force Monday, succeeded in evacuating a Llion found at a private home around Victoria Island to a zoo in Omu Resorts, Lekki.”
He added that the exercise was carried out in conjunction with officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture and medical personnel from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan.
Speaking further, Egbeyemi said that Dr. Ogunmo Bamidele, who led the medical team from University of Ibadan, had to tranquilised the lion thrice before evacuation.
He confirmed that the agency responded to a petition from residents while investigations revealed that the lion was brought in from Cameroun by an Indian two years ago.
“Immediately I got the petition, I deployed my officers to the house at No. 229, Muri-Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, where they kept a close watch for more than 72 hours before the lion was finally removed today (Monday)”, Egbeyemi said.
The chairman assured residents that the owner of the lion will fkenace the full wrath of the law, warning residents to abstain from harbouring wild animals that endanger lives of others.
“In as much as we appreciate residents around Victoria Island for their quick action, we urge every member of the public to be observant in their immediate environment and report any strange or unusual activity to appropriate government authority for prompt action”, he stated.
The Director, Veterinary Services, Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Macaulay Rasheed also advised members of the public to stop rearing wild animals at private homes in order to avoid unnecessary attack and contagious animal diseases.