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An Easter to forget in a hurry…

An empty filling station

An empty filling station

Alleged drunk driver crushes five on Easter Monday •Lagos Task force boss to arrest black market hawkers

Last weekend’s Easter celebration is one to be forgotten in a hurry for many Nigerians. It was what many had dubbed an Easter without fuel, forcing many to abandon fun activities in search of petrol. In spite of the long weekend, which lasted from Friday till Monday, there was very little to cheer about at Easter.

For many football-loving Nigerians, the Super Eagles qualifying match against Egypt at Kaduna for the African Nations Cup next year made a dour situation worse. The outcome of the match played on Good Friday was an anticlimax, as it did little to lift the spirit of Nigerians for a fun-filled celebration of the season.

It was a sad Easter Monday for residents of Amukoko area of Lagos State as a drunk driver crushed five people in a motor accident. One of the victims, 68-year-old Mariam Raji, later died at the Ajegunle General Hospital, where she and other victims were rushed to.

Other victims of the accident include 38-year-old Angel Amusiem, Mohid Sanni and Kafayat Lukmon. The identity of the fifth victim could not be ascertained as of press time.

The driver, Eugene Nweke has been arrested by the police and is being detained at Amukoko police station from where he would be transferred to the State Criminal Investigations Department.

It was gathered that Nweke was driving along Alafia Street in Amukoko, when he lost control and rammed into a crowd. The Mercedez Benz with the Registration No EPE 471 CD crushed five people in the process, creating serious confusion among the residents of the area.

The spokesperson of the Lagos Police Command, Mrs. Dolapo Badmos, confirmed the incident, adding that he was under the influence of Action Bitters, when the accident happened. She said a pet bottle of Action Bitter, which will serve as the exhibit, was also recovered from the suspect’s car.

The season was highlighted by massive queues at the few filling stations dispensing fuel, many of which were for between N130 and N200 per litre. The situation was heightened shortly before Easter after the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu, said he had no means of ending the scarcity that may last for another two months.

A motorist, Emeka Onyekachi, expressed regret over the non-availability of petrol, saying it was unfortunate that government had yet to fix the problem of the supply of petroleum products.

“I read in the papers that the problem will not end till May, which means all the things they have been saying to us were not true. As a result I have been spending countless hours to queue and fill up my tank at a moderate rate. At the end, I settled for N140 per litre, which affected my Easter plans. All the activities lined up to mark the Easter holidays could not be achieved and I was forced to spend the holiday indoors with my family.”

Another customer at the NNPC mega station in Victoria Island, Yusuf Ahmed, said it was obvious many people spent their Easter queuing to buy fuel. “I can imagine what many Christians would be going through this season.

Following scarcity of fuel being experienced across the country, the newly-appointed chairman, Lagos Task Force, Olayinka Egbeyemi, has warned hawkers of fuel inside kegs on highways and other roads across the state to desist from the act, as henceforth anyone caught would be charged to court and also have his fuel confiscated.

Egbeyemi equally warned petrol attendants to stop dispensing fuel into jerry-cans for their customers in other to discourage storage of fuel in homes, which could cause fire outbreak.



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