HomeNewsHoodlums Loot Food Truck Amid Price Hike Protests in Nigeria

Hoodlums Loot Food Truck Amid Price Hike Protests in Nigeria

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Niger state, Nigeria – A protest over rising food prices in Niger state, Nigeria, turned violent on Thursday after hoodlums hijacked a trailer load of foodstuff along the Suleja-Kaduna road.

According to eyewitnesses, the protesters took control of the trailer, which was loaded with rice and other items, after overpowering the driver and began to steal from the truck.

“I saw the miscreants surrounding the trailer and chanting protest songs that it is their food. Before we knew what was happening, the hoodlums had overpowered the driver of the trailer who had to run for his life and they began to steal from the trailer,” one of the eyewitnesses said.

The witness added that security operatives comprising of soldiers, police and civil defence personnel later stormed the scene of the protest and started firing tear gas to disperse the protesters.

The state police spokesman, Wasiu Abiodun, confirmed the incident and said the Suleja Area Commander, ACP Sani Musa, mobilised patrol teams to the scene and cleared the highway for free flow of traffic.

“There was a protest this morning along Kaduna road, Suleja, and the protest plan was not communicated to the Police, it was later discovered to be hijacked by some miscreants who blocked the highway,” Abiodun said.

“Area Commander Suleja, ACP Sani Musa, mobilised patrol teams to the scene, dispersed the protesters and the highway was cleared for free flow of traffic, however, monitoring continues,” he added.

The spokesman could not confirm how many of the hoodlums were arrested at the time of filing this report.

A wave of discontent

The incident in Niger state is the latest in a series of protests over the hardship in the country, which has been grappling with economic recession, inflation, unemployment and insecurity.

Last week, women in Kpakungu in Minna, the capital of Niger state, led a protest against the high cost of living and demanded the government to intervene and provide relief.

The women, who carried placards with various inscriptions, said they could no longer afford to feed their families and accused the government of neglecting their plight. They also lamented the lack of basic amenities such as water, electricity and health care in their community.

The protest led to the arrest of about 30 persons, including the women who led the demonstration.

A call for action

The rising food prices and the worsening food insecurity have sparked calls for urgent action from various stakeholders, including civil society groups, religious leaders and opposition parties.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the umbrella body of trade unions in the country, has threatened to embark on a nationwide strike and mass protest if the government fails to address the economic crisis and reverse the hike in fuel and electricity tariffs.

The NLC president, Ayuba Wabba, said the workers and the masses were suffering and could no longer cope with the situation.

“We have been pushed to the wall. We have no choice than to resist these policies that are killing our people,” Wabba said.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) also issued a statement expressing concern over the state of the nation and urging the government to take decisive steps to alleviate the suffering of the people.

The bishops said the government should prioritise the provision of social services, create employment opportunities, improve security and fight corruption. They also called on the citizens to be vigilant and hold their leaders accountable.

“We appeal to all Nigerians to keep hope alive and not to give in to despair and frustration,” the bishops said.

Source: Punch

 

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