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Commuters Stranded As Protesters Block Auchi-Benin Highway Over Deplorable Condition [PHOTOS]

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…Vow To Occupy The Road Until Something Is Done

Travellers on the ever busy Benin-Auchi highway were on Monday stranded for hours as protesters in their numbers blocked the expressway over deplorable condition of the Ekpoma axis of the road.

The protesters who vowed to occupy the road until works on the road commences, stressed that only palliatives can no longer fix the road but a complete reworking.

Due to protest and consequent blockade, trailers and other heavy duty vehicles had to park which led to on a long queue from the Ujoelen axis of the highway where the protesters gathered, up to Ambrose Alli University main gate and beyond, towards Benin and the same thing applies to the stretch towards Auchi where the queue extended beyond the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital.

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It was gathered that the protest led by Esan Liberation Movement and the Concerned Ekpoma Eminent Stakeholders Forum, was aimed at drawing attention of the government to the deplorable condition of the road.

Speaking, the Convener, Esan Liberation Movement, Hon. Prosper Iyere, stressed the need for the government as well as all the stakeholders concerned to, as a matter of urgency, do the needful in ensuring that the failed portions of the Edo central axis of the highway were fixed.

READ ALSO: Edo: Commuters Stranded As Spare Parts Dealers Protest Deplorable Condition Of Road

According to him, several letters have been written to the state government and other stakeholders but to no avail.

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“We have written to the Edo State governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, the Senator representing Edo Central at the National Assembly, Senator Clifford Ordia, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, the two members of Edo central at the National Assembly, Hon. Joe Edionwele, and Hon. Sergius Ogun, as well as the Minister for Environment, Hon. Clem Agba, to formally inform them of the deplorable condition of the Ekpoma axis of the Benin/Auchi highway, but no response,” he lamented.

On his part, Dr. Jude Obasanmi, the Convener, Concerned Ekpoma Eminent Stakeholders Forum, CEESF, was moved to tears as he explained the harrowing experience that the people of Ekpoma pass through on a daily basis, as a result of the failed portions of the highway.

He narrated the story of a woman who fell off a bike and got her leg broken, just as he rhetorically asked “… how long are we going to continue like this?”

It was gathered that the contract for the reconstruction and expansion of Edo central axis of the Benin-Auchi highway was awarded to Dantata and Sawoe Construction Company, but the work has been on slow pace and this has been a major concern to the people of Edo central in particular and those that ply the highway in general.

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Police Officer Shot, 3 Others Arrested Over Destruction Of Property In Delta

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Police operatives arrested three officers for allegedly supervising land encroachment and destruction of properties, following alleged land dispute between Ogbeozoma quarters of Okpanam and Akpoma quarters Issele-Azagba, Aniocha North Local Government Area, Delta State

A police officer was also reportedly shot during the operation which occurred in the early hours of Tuesday.

Trouble, sources said, started when one of the parties mobilized to the site after they received information that some people were destroying the properties of their tenants.

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A source who craved anonymity said on arrival, the people were confronted by police the officers as other people who came with them for the operation took to their heels.

READ ALSO: Tragedy Struck In Edo As Trees Fall, Kill Four Injure Many

The source said a police aide to one of the tenants was shot and was rushed to the hospital where he was receiving treatment.

The source said the arrested officers claimed that they were attached to Force Headquarters, Abuja.

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He said the three officers and the payloader driver were taken to the Police Command headquarters, adding that two Hilux vehicles and the two payloaders recovered from the site were parked in the premises of the police divisional headquarters in Okpanam.

Contacted, Police Public Relations Officer of the State Police Command, Mt. Bright Edafe , said “No information, l don’t know whether it happened or how it happened, but once l have been properly informed, l will let you know.”

 

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Navy Uncovers Illegal Oil Bunkering Storage Facility In Rivers, Rescues 4 Fishermen

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Nigerian Navy units across the Nation’s maritime domain fighting against oil theft, have uncovered a storage facility for illegal oil bunkering, and rescued 4 fishermen just as they seized 56 bags of cannabis in the last two days.

A statement by Naval headquarters said, ‘Specifically on Monday, 22 July 2024, the Quick Response Team of Nigerian Navy Ship Pathfinder under the auspices of Operation Delta Sanity uncovered an illegal storage facility used by illegal bunkerers of crude oil and refined products at Egbema Okwuzi town in Rivers State.

“Accordingly, the team swiftly cordoned the area and arrested 2 suspects involved in the illegal activities.

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READ ALSO: Bandits Kill Usmanu Dan Fodiyo Varsity Deputy VC

“About 68,000 litres of illegally refined Automative Gas Oil was stored in various containers, sacks, drums and tanks within the facility.

“Additionally, equipment such as pumping machines, hoses, and outboard engines, were also discovered within the illegal facility.

“Investigations are ongoing to ascertain the owner of the illegal facility and other collaborators.

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READ ALSO: Edo Assembly Recalls Suspended Lawmaker

“On the same day, Monday 22 July 2024 at about 9:40pm, personnel of the Nigerian Navy Forward Operating Base Badagry rescued 4 drowning fishermen about 10 nautical miles from Lagos Fair Way Bouy.

“The fishermen were all Ghanaians fishing within the area when their boat capsized due to the rough seas.

“In a different incident, on Wednesday 24 July 2024, the Quick Response Team of Nigerian Navy Ship Beecroft intercepted a wooden boat loaded with 56 bags of cannabis sativa at Moba Beach, Badagry.

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“The Quick Response Team is currently in pursuit of the suspects who will be arrested soon.

“It is important to remind all operators and stakeholders within the Nation’s maritime domain that under the leadership of the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ikechukwu Ogalla, the Nigerian Navy is poised to keep Nation’s waters safe and secure for legitimate economic activities.

Consequently, nefarious elements are advised to desist from perpetuating any form of illegalities within Nigeria’s territorial waters.”

 

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Gunmen Abduct 2 Chinese, Kill 5 Nigerians In Lokoja

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Two Chinese Nationals have been kidnapped while five security personas have been killed following the attack from some gunmen who invaded a mining site on Zango City, the outskirts of Lokoja, Kogi State capital.

It was gathered that the gunmen in large numbers had a field day on Monday when they stormed a mining site in Zango City and killed five persons, made up of three vigilante members and two staff of the mining site before they abducted two Chinese citizens.

Locals said the unfortunate attack occurred in the evening at about 5 pm and lasted for about 45 minutes when sounds of sporadic gunshots emanated from the hilly range behind Al Azhar International School. They said the suspected gunmen were about 20, with many of them bearded.

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READ ALSO: Reinstated Shaibu Appoints Aides, Edo Govt Kicks

It was gathered that while the audible gunshots from the mountain were unrelenting, people hurriedly closed their shops, and panic-stricken locals abandoned their homes to take cover in other places considered safe.

A hunter who preferred not to be named claimed to have participated in evacuating the corpses, identifying the deceased vigilantes simply as Abdulazeez, Tijani, and Yusuf, said gory photos of their remains were sighted.

Abdul, a resident and shop owner in Zango, said he heard the sounds of the gunshots, “Initially, we did not know what was happening, and the gunshots were loud. I had to leave the area along with other people out of fear. This is very bad and worrisome in the state capital. We urge the government to step up security in the state.”

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Efforts to reach the police including telephone calls and messages to the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, William Anya, did not yield results.

 

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