The Lagos State Police Command on Monday said it had arrested 57 persons suspected to be involved in homosexual activities in the Egbeda area of the state.
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Edgal Imohimi, confirmed the arrest to newsmen during a news conference.
He said that the suspects were picked up on Sunday at 2 a.m. while they were performing gay-initiation for newly recruited members.
Imohimi said: “Intelligence gathered revealed that some youths will be initiated into a Gay/Homosexual Club between 1 a.m and 2 a.m., at Kelly Ann Hotel/ Event Centre, located at No. 3-7, Adenrele St., Egbeda, an action contrary to Section 1 (1) of Same Sex Marriage, Act 2014.
“Consequent upon this, some operatives from the Shasha and Idimu Police Stations stormed the venue and met no less than 80 young men.
“They were taking different types of drinks including banned substances like Tramadol, Shisha laced with substances suspected to be Marijuana.
“As soon as they sighted the police, they ran into different directions but the team arrested 57 of them.”
The CP said that investigation into the case was ongoing and the suspects would be charged to court soon.
However, some of the suspects who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria on the sidelines of the press conference, denied the allegations.
They said that they were at the hotel to attend a wedding and a birthday party.
One of the suspects, James Obialu, said that he was a dancer and had come to the party to perform before he was arrested.
Obialu said: “I am not a gay, I am a dancer and I was there to perform before I was arrested. I am a responsible citizen and I work at the Alimosho General Hospital as a counsellor for those living with HIV.”
Another suspect, Samuel Olarotimi, 22, and also a graduate of Mass Communication from the Yaba College of Technology, said that there were other females in the hotel who were not arrested.
Olarotimi said: “I was there for a birthday party which started late. About eight ladies were at the bar with us while some other ladies were dressing up in their rooms.
“I don’t know why the police refused to arrest the other females but brought us here as alleged homosexuals.”
One of them, Bob China, said that he accompanied his friend, a caterer, to deliver food at the party but was arrested while waiting outside the hotel.