Osarodion Ogie

…Police Confirms Seven Stations, Over 25 Vehicles Burnt

Benin- As the Edo State Government reaffirmed the 24-hour (round-the-clock) curfew it imposed on the state on Monday, the police command has confirmed the burning of Seven of their police stations along with over 25 vehicles within Benin City during.

This is coming even as two persons were shot dead at Santana Market along Sapele Road in Benin City during exchange of fire between the hoodlums and the policemen who were trying to maintain peace in the area on Tuesday.

The Edo State government had placed a 24 hours curfew on the state following the violence which erupted on Monday during the #EndSARS protest. However, the youths still made their presence in some of the roads and streets on Tuesday.

From Ekenwan Road to Airport Road, Sapele Road and other interchange junctions within Benin metropolis, the youths took over strategic positions as they chanted anti government slogans.

However, Ring Road, which is in the heart of town is deserted. The GRA, Ugbor, Abuja quarters and Sapele Road were peaceful with few cab operators seen going about their business.

The protest equally resumed in Auchi as the youths again regrouped at the popular Jattu junction, allowing only motorists on essential duties were allowed free passage.

Meanwhile, security has been tightened in parts of the state capital and adjoining towns as a response to the highjacking of the peaceful #EndSARS protests by hoodlums,which led to two jail breaks at two Correctional centres and the burning of the seven Police stations over 25 police vehicles in the state.

The police gave the names of the burnt police stations as Idogbo, Ugbekun, St. saviour, Oba market, Textile Mill, Ivbiotor and Evbotybu.

The police have also rearrested 18 inmates of the over 1,200 prisoners that were set free by the protesters/hoodlums in the two correctional centers in Benin on Monday.

Meanwhile, Edo State government has confirmed the deployment of security agencies to the streets to ensure full compliance and of 24 hours curfew and warned that anyone found contravening the directive will be dealt with according to the law.

Mr. Osarodion Ogie, Secretary to the Edo State government told our reporter in an interview that the October 19, 2020 24 hours curfew subsists and is active till further notice, everyone is expected to remain indoors.

He urged parents and guardians to restrain their children, youths and wards from flouting the order, as security agencies will not spare any errant individual.

“The government is committed to maintaining law and order and protecting lives and property in the state, urging Edo citizens and residents to obey the directives for the collective good of all.

Speaking on why the enforcement of the curfew was delayed on Tuesday till afternoon, Ogie said, the enforcement of the curfew could not have been automatic.

“We are expecting police reinforcement from other states to join Edo command to enforce the curfew. Besides, the announcement of the curfew was sudden and people have to be given the opportunity to buy some food stuff and there are also people with doctors appointment, they should be given the opportunity to keep such appointment.”

Now that the enforcement has started we will watch the situation and review it from time to time, We may review it to start from 6pm to 6 am depending on the situation”.

The police Commissioner, CP Johnson Kokumo while speaking with our reporter said the command was still taking the inventory of the destruction visited on the police facilities by hoodlums who called themselves protesters, saying that the police is on top of the situation.. There were still pockets of blockade by some hoodlums at upper mission extension by lucky way junction.

There was also another blockade along lucky way up to ramat park and others around Aduwawa, Evbotubu, Dumez road, Sapele and Agbor roads all in Benin city.

Report also revealed pockets of hoodlums taking over major roads in the state capital extorting people on legitimate movement.

Those on essential duties like the media, health officials, BEDC etc across Benin city were forced to part with money before they drove pass.