Journalist shot, three women trampled to death in Abuja warehouse looting
A sun newspaper journalist, Emmanuel Adeyemi, was yesterday, shot by hoodlums raiding warehouses in Lokoja, Kogi State.
Adeyemi was said to be on his way to the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) secretariat when he was shot.
The miscreants also shot another passerby whose name could not be immediately ascertained. The victim was said to have arrived in the city from Benue State.
As of the time of filing this report, there were gunshots in the air while shops along the Murtala Mohammed Way were closed as people scampered for safety.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), William Aya, said the gunshots were from hoodlums who were scaring people away to them have free access to their looting activities.
Also, the state information Commissioner, Kingsley Fanwo, in a statement claimed, “sponsored mercenaries were sneaked into the town to cause mayhem”.
This incident came barely 12 hours after the Agricultural Development Project warehouse where fertilizers were stored was looted overnight.
In the meantime, about three women were reportedly trampled to death, with others injured during the looting of a warehouse containing COVID-19 palliatives in Gwagwalada, Abuja, yesterday.
Some hoodlums were said to have jumped an adjacent fence into the warehouse close to the WAEC office while several others fought their way through the back door of a nearby Fidelity Bank premises along with the Gwagwalada Area Council.
Soldiers, police, Nigeria Civil Defence and Safety Corps officers who attempted to stop the looting were overpowered by hoodlums.
Trouble actually began at about 8.43 am as the youths gathered in their numbers in the area leading to the warehouse built within five months by the Gwagwalada Area Council.
The Guardian learned that most of the hoodlums came from the surrounding areas.
Items looted included bags of rice, cartons of Indomie noodles, spaghetti, macaroni, fertiliser,
Indorama products, motorbikes, grinding machines, bags of salt, bags of sugar, and cartons of soaps.
Also in Abuja yesterday, an angry mob numbering over 500 gained entrance into Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Aluminum Market located at Idu Industrial Layout and carted away doors, window frames, cutting machines, welding machines, chairs and tables, and other valuables.
As at the time of filing this report, police were battling to prevent the youths from further looting.
Besides, police in Kwara State arrested 144 hoodlums who allegedly looted government and private property in Ilorin.
Parading the suspects yesterday, the Commissioner of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, said all the suspects were arrested with looted items in their procession.
Egbetokun advised those in possession of the stolen items to willingly surrender them.
He said whoever returned stolen items willingly would be pardoned.
Also, the Taraba State Government has extended the curfew imposed on Jalingo to 24 hours until further notice following the looting and destruction of both public and private property.
In a statement yesterday, the Deputy Governor, Haruna Manu, said the government had reviewed developments in the last 24 hours and decided to extend the curfew to save life and property.
Apart from government and private warehouses that were looted and destroyed by the youths, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camp in Sibre village, Ardo-Kola council was also vandalised.
At the Taraba State Broadcasting Station (TSBS), air conditioners’ others things were all stolen.
Computers and sewing machines, among other items to be distributed to youths undergoing training in skill acquisition, were carted away by hoodlums from the Ministry of Poverty Alleviation.
In Wukari council, the government lodge, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office, and the local government secretariat were attacked and valuables were taken away.
Meanwhile, the Forum of Mothers in Plateau State (FMP) yesterday condemned the looting of warehouses in the state by miscreants.
However, the group commended the special military task force, Operation Safe Haven, for arresting many of the looters.
In a statement by its Executive Director, Mrs. Rebecca Pam, the group urged Governor Simon Lalong “to convene an emergency community peace advocacy programme targeted at youths”.
Also, Kaduna Social Protection Accountability Coalition (KADSPAC) yesterday kicked against the looting of palliatives and destruction of public and private property in Chikun and Kaduna South local government areas of the state.
Chairman of the coalition, Ms. Jessica Bartholomew, in a statement appealed for calm.
She denied that the palliatives were hoarded by politicians for private use, adding that arrangements were on to distribute them to the poor and vulnerable households.