Delta town boils as soldiers, police invade motor park
ECONOMIC activities were brought to a halt yesterday in Effurun and its environs by armed youths who completely took over the area following reported forcibly reinstatement of a former executive of a public motor park in the locality led by one Ariyo with alleged connivance of police officers and soldiers.
The Guardian gathered that the rampaging youths were protesting the invasion of the park by truckloads of policemen and soldiers in the early hours of yesterday before the ‘reinstatement’.
The ever-busy Jakpa Junction, PTI Road, Warri-Sapele Road and adjoining streets were completely deserted as the armed youths went berserk brandishing all manner of dangerous equipment, including guns, cutlasses among at strategic locations.
The protesters, believed to be sympathetic to the deposed chairman, Comrade Napoleon Adibu, forced business owners and other economic establishments to hurriedly closed shop for fear of attack.
Commenting on the incident, the council’s Chairman, Hon. Baro Henry Minabowanre said he was surprised by the invasion of the park by policemen, adding that as the chief security officer of the council, he was not briefed about the plan to invade the park and other places.
“We were also amazed that law enforcement agents are being used to carry out these illegalities. This is a country that is governed by laws and I believe these issues can be resolved through the law. We will have respite in not too long (distance) because we are on top of the matter. Uvwie has been peaceful in recent times,” Minabowanre assured.
However, the Police Public Relation Officer for the state’s command, Celestina kalu said his men invaded the park to enforce security following persistent complaints of criminal activities in the locality, noting that the officers were instructed to shoot at sight.
In disagreeing the council chairman said: “The police who claim to be enforcing peace were the ones who illegally brought the sacked administration to take over the park. The police led those that were formally running the motor park and forcibly took over the motor park this wee hour of today (yesterday).”
He stressed that the 1999 Constitution gives the local councils the power to establish, maintain and regulate slaughter houses, markets and motor parks as well as public conveniences, wondering why the security agencies were interfering.
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