Ekiti youths in violent protest against petroleum marketers
Angry youths from Ekiti State yesterday engaged in a violent protest against petroleum marketers.The youths, who attacked some filling stations in Ado Ekiti also destroyed property worth several millions of naira.
Acting under the aegis of Ekiti Youth Artisans Coalition, they took to the streets, demanding the “relocation of some petrol stations out of the state since they had refused to sell petrol to the people.”
The protesters, who displayed various placards to register their anger, torched some petrol stations in Dalimore and Adebayo areas of the state.They vowed to continue their protest until the matter is resolved.
The youths alleged that the scarcity was “a deliberate ploy by the dealers to cripple Ekiti and arrest the socio-economic development currently being witnessed in the state.”
Some of the filling stations badly vandalised during the attack included NIPCO, along Adebayo Street, Ado Ekiti, which is owned by Suleiman Akinbami, who is also the Secretary of the Petroleum Marketing Dealers in the state.
Also attacked were Tetra Abby Company Ltd and its branch along Dallimore Street, both owned by another popular marketer.According to an eyewitness, the attackers, armed with dangerous weapons as axes, cutlasses, bottles, arrived at NIPCO early in the morning to unleash the attack.
Akinbami denied allegation that he collected N50 million from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to sponsor the non-supply of fuel to the state.He said: “The protest must have been sponsored by government, as we do not know anything about the alleged non-supply of petrol to the state and I did not collect any money from any party. I am not a politician and no one should drag me into political games.”
But, Governor Ayodele Fayose, through his Chief Press Secretary, Idowu Adelusi, cautioned the protesters not to take laws into their hands.“However, we must state that the government would remain resolute in its resolve to safeguard the lives of Ekiti people by not allowing construction of petrol stations in residential and school areas.
“Apart from already existing petrol stations, construction work on all petrol stations being built in residential and school areas stand stopped and the Certificates of Occupancy stand revoked,” the statement said.