Air Force personnel teargas stranded students, commuters, travelers as IPOB sit-at-home ground commercial activities in Enugu

August 10, 2021
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Operatives of the Nigerian Air Force monitoring the sit-at-home order by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) on Monday teargas students, commuters, travellers and workers who were stranded at bus stops, in Enugu.

This came as commercial activities were grounded while schools, banks, hospitals and government offices were shut down.

Residents were also seen trekking to their various destinations where possible while those who could not embark on trekking retired to their houses.

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It was gathered the operatives of the Nigerian Air Force who were operating in three Hilux vans teargas commuters at the popular Orie Emene junction when they saw an intimidating crowd of people.

Among the people that were affected are students going for National Examination Council exam and commuters who were stranded as their was no vehicles to take them to their various destinations.

An eyewitness, who gave his name as Ezekiel Eze, told our correspondent that the action of the operatives as uncalled for.

According to him, “I came out this morning to witness what was happening at the Orie Emene junction. A lot of people – students, commuters, travellers were standing at the bus stop because their was no commercial vehicles. There was a lot of movement because some were trekking. To my greatest surprise, I saw a lot of people, people that were willing to go to work and there was no vehicle at the junction.

“Shortly, operatives of the Nigerian Air Force came and started shooting sporadically and teargas the commuters waiting patiently for commercial vehicles to take them to their destinations. They started chasing people that came out with no arms, they were not protesting. Their crime was because they were waiting for a bus to take them to their various working and schools.

“The action of the operatives were uncalled for, their duty as I may say is to protect the people and not to intimidate them. You can see that such action was the reason the IPOB order on sit-at-home succeeded in Enugu State. If out there as a security agent, you should let people know that you are out for them, to protect them and not to frightened them. There is no reason to teargas stranded students and commuters.”

At the parts of the state, government institutions were closed including the National Orthopedic Hospital, Enugu. At about 10:30am administrative offices and Out Patient Department were still under lock and key. Patients were seen hanging around the hospital, hoping that before noon somebody could attend to them.

At the popular Abakpa Junction, Ogui Road, Eke-Obinagu, Emene, New Haven and Otigba Junction shops, fuel stations and banks were closed down. Ogbete Main Market, Abakpa Market, New Market, Motor Spare parts Coal Camp were all closed in obedience to the sit-at-home order by the separatist group in demand for the Federal Government to release their leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

A student who was participating at NECO examination, Miss Chisom Njoku, told our correspondent that the sit-at-home was unnecessary and uncalled for. “I have mathematics to write this morning and my school is far, I can’t trek to the school. There was no vehicle to convey people. Few tricycle operators who came out are demanding N1,000 and in some cases N1500 for a drop in place you ordinarily paid N200.

“I’m pleading with the leadership of IPOB to rescind their decision of every Monday sit-at-home. It is going to affect us materially, economically, educationally and otherwise.”

Some commuters who also spoke on the sit-at-home described it as economic strangulation, appealing to the leaders of the separatist group to find another means to vent their grievances.

All efforts to get the Air Force Public Relations Officer, Enugu, Friday Ogili, for reaction was unsuccessful as his phone was said switched off.

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