Imo: Angry Youth Riot After 2 Local Men Killed By Oil Company’s...

Imo: Angry Youth Riot After 2 Local Men Killed By Oil Company’s Truck

By Ebenezer Olatunji | News Reporter on February 16, 2020
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A angry youth protests in front
FILE: A angry youth protests in front of a burning barrier following the removal of a fuel subsidy by the government in Lagos, Nigeria in January 2012. | Sunday Alamba/AP

In Assa Community, Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State, a number of cars and several other valuables were destroyed after the truck working for Assa North Ohaji, ANOH, Gas Joint Project, killed two villagers.

The deceased, Johnmark Rufus and Friday Amadi were Lee Engineering Company engineering workers, commissioned to construct the gigantic gas plant.

Assa North-Ohaji South Gas Processing is owned and managed by Seplat and the Nigerian Gas Co, a unit of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corp to develop, build, operate and maintain the gas plant in Imo State.

It was gathered that the two persons crushed to death by the truck were on a motorcycle going to work when the incident occurred at Amnesty Junction, Asaa Community.

The thick smoke from a bush fire around the scene of the accident, prevented both the driver of the truck and the motorcyclist from seeing each other on the sharp bend as they rammed into each other, leaving the two occupants of the bike dead on the spot.

A source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Nation that following the death of the two youths, their kinsmen from Assa regrouped and allegedly invaded the company.

They were said to also set three trucks belonging to the company ablaze, smashed other cars and office equipment within the company.

Some others were said to have looted the company’s property and office equipment.

The source, who is a vigilante operative in the area, added that the incident caused tension in the area as the company alerted soldiers who tried in vain to repel the invaders.

The further disclosed that when the soldiers shot several persons, the others fled the scene with their motorcycles, leaving the injured in the pool of their own blood.

It took the intervention of a senior police officer in the area to get the severely injured persons treated in the hospital.

The crisis forced the company to shut down while an unofficial curfew was imposed on the community, as according to the villagers, those seen between 7 pm and 6 am were dealt with by the soldiers, who patrol the villages.

When The Nation reached out to the Public Relations Officer of the state Police Command, Orlando Ikeokwu, he said he was not aware of the incident.

He, however, promised to get back to The Nation after confirming from the DPO of Ohaji Division.

But, as of the time of filing this report, Ikeokwu was yet to get back to our correspondent and could not answer calls put across to his phone line.

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