This Day (Lagos)

18 July 2012

Nigeria: Commotion in Damaturu As Gunshots Rent the Air

A group of Niger Delta militants

There was commotion in Damaturu, Yobe State capital Tuesday as gunshots were heard in some parts of the town.

Investigation by THISDAY revealed that the sporadic shooting caused panic and apprehension among the residents.

It was gathered that trouble started when members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) who were being harassed by security operatives decided to protest their maltreatment.

It was further gathered that the executives of the NURTW who were said to have prevented the motor parks from being opened, stopped their members from picking even passengers from the roads.

The enforcement of the directive was to cause beach of peace which the police tried to check, leading to gunshots to repel the protesting transporters.

THISDAY checks revealed that the gunshots caused apprehension and led to injuries by some persons as residents had to scamper for safety with the fear that members of the Boko Haram sect may have launched an attack on the town again.

It was gathered that in one of the shootings heard very close to Government House, one of the drivers in the employ of the state government simply identified as Bala was seriously injured and had to be taken to the hospital where he is presently in the critical condition.

Another victim of the shooting who spoke to THISDAY, Hussaini Ahmed Gimba, said the incident occurred at about 1.pm when they were contemplating waiting for the afternoon prayer or going to their different homes in apprehension of possible attack which has become the order of the day.

He said they heard sporadic gunshots and he quickly moved to his car but was lucky to stay alive as his Toyota Camry, dark ash colour with registration number FKA 34 YB was hit by bullets which destroyed the rear and side glasses.

Gimba who works with the Board of Internal Revenue said the gunshots were heard from the office of the Police Criminal Investigation Department and he could not wait to ascertain whether it was been attacked or not as he had to flee the vicinity.

Confirming the incident, the Acting Police Public Relations Officer, Toyin Gbadegesin, said there was a slight disorder in the town and the police took charge immediately to return order.

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