• Youths risk death over expired foods, drugs
• Many killed, many injured
• Abuja, Adamawa, Taraba, Kogi under attack
• NAFDAC, Kaduna urge caution
• SERAP asks ICPC to probe hoarded palliatives
According to austinbriggsblog.com Looting of items meant for COVID-19 palliatives, which began few days ago, continued in warehouses across the country, spreading to the nation’s seat of power, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.
Adamawa, Taraba, and Kogi states, yesterday, had their fair share of the plundering, as warehouses and private shops were attacked in an extended #ENDSARS protests by youths. Protests against police brutality and bad governance have, in the last two weeks, rocked major cities in states and the FCT.
Many, including the National Agency for Food & Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), and the Yoruba socio-cultural group, Oodua Youth Parliament, among others, warned of immediate and far-reaching impacts on the economy.
In Abuja, looting took place despite presence of security agents, who fired teargas at the invaders. Women, youths and children in Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) carted away bags of corn, LPG gas cylinders, bags of rice, gallons of vegetable oil, vehicle batteries, millet, roofing zinc, cement, among other valuables worth millions of naira.
The attack on warehouses began in early hours of yesterday and continued until 11:30am, as desperate youths and women defied police teargas and emptied the storerooms.
The Guardian gathered that two ladies collapsed of exhaustion while struggling to enter the warehouse.
Some youths, who spoke with journalists, accused government of hoarding food items and other COVID-19 palliatives meant for the people, adding that most of the items, particularly the bags of rice, were bad for consumption, having expired.
The warehouse invasion turned tragic in Lokoja, as three residents allegedly died during the stampede. Hundreds of people had stormed the Kogi State warehouse in Lokoja to cart away COVID-19 palliatives from a storehouse.
Women and youths invaded the warehouse, located along Murtala Mohammed Way, as early as 7a.m.
Security agencies deployed in the area remained civil as residents took away stored items. Security agents were seen advising the people to maintain peace and avoid anything that would lead to stampede.
DUSK-to-dawn curfew by Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba State to prevent looting failed as youths emptied warehouses in sight. As of the time of filing this report, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camp located in Siberi Village in Ardo-Kola Local Government Council, had become a shadow of itself as all items in the camp had been vandalised.
Warehouses in Jalingo metropolis and its environs were also vandalised.
The action, which started Saturday evening on government warehouses, was extended to private warehouses.
In Yola, the Adamawa State capital, youths attacked and looted six warehouses as early as 7 a.m. when church services were going on. While security agents tried to halt looting at the biggest warehouse in North East located along the Yola-Gombe Road, youths, women and children took over the central store, along Mohammed Mustafa Road.
Youths, in large number, chanted: “This is our national cake, these people are wicked”, even as the combined efforts of the military and police failed to stop them.
The youths, who were described as hoodlums by the Police Public Relations Officer of the Adamawa Command, CSP Suleiman Nguroje, carried away foodstuffs and non-consumables for hours.
The Yola episode caused gridlock along the Yola-Gombe Road and Mohammed Mustafa Road, as motorists could not access the routes.
The PPRO said that the police were on ground to prevent looting of private businesses and houses.
According to Nguroje, the Adamawa police command will soon commence full investigation to ascertain those behind looting of warehouses in the state.
Hoodlums also defied 24-hour curfew imposed on two Plateau councils — Jos North and Jos South — at the weekend to break into the Plateau Agricultural Development Programme (PADP) in Dogon Dutse, carting away bags of fertiliser and other farm inputs.
The home of Yakubu Dogara, former Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives was among the houses vandalised by the rampaging youths.
The looters broke into Dogara’s house located near Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) at about 10 a.m.
Sources said the hoodlums, in their large numbers, broke into the house, attacked everyone, including Dogara’s brother, before looting the building.
Hoodlums also, vandalised the warehouses of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and looted foodstuffs and other items. They destroyed property and carted away valuables.
They also vandalised the state secretariat, the water board and other government buildings and made away with some valuables, it was learnt.
At the time of filing this report, hundreds of youths, including women, were seen with agricultural inputs taken out of the premises of PADP.
Founder/president of Evangelical Bible Outreach Ministries International, Jos, Plateau State, Prophet Isa El-Buba, appealed to youths in the state to desist from looting and destroying public property.