No life lost in Akwa Ibom abattoir unrest – Police

No life was lost in disturbances that erupted in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom capital on Wednesday, police have said.

The leader of livestock dealers in Akwa Ibom State, Mijin Yawa also refuted reports that some persons were killed during the fracas that started at an abattoir in the state.

“Nobody died for this problem, not a single person,” Mr Yawa told PREMIUM TIMES on Friday.

The police confirmed that nobody was killed in the fracas which has created tension between the Hausa community and the indigenous people in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom capital.

Mr Yawa said the fracas started when two “touts” – Louis Joseph and Abba Mohamed – fought over the money they realised from the sale of a goat in the market.

“They said they sold a goat and made a profit of about N11,000 and in the process of sharing it, Louis gave to Abba only N500 which Abba said he won’t collect, and that led to a fight between the two of them,” Mr Yawa said.

Mr Mohammed was said to have fainted when he was thrown to the ground by Louis, which attracted some Hausa boys who grabbed the latter and handed him over to some officials of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.

Mr Yawa said some “Akwa Ibom boys” later came into the market to protest the arrest of Louis and that led to the fracas.

Mr Yawa’s statement on the fracas has been corroborated by the police in Akwa Ibom State.

Louis is in police custody, while Abba and others who sustained injuries have been taken to the hospital, the police spokesperson in Akwa Ibom State, Odiko MacDon, said in a statement on the incident.

Unrest erupted in the usually peaceful capital of Akwa Ibom State, sending residents scampering for safety as shops and businesses closed.

On Thursday, Governor announced the donation of vehicles to the police for increased patrols.
Mr MacDon, a superintendent of police, said a car, tricycle, and motorcycle were destroyed during the fracas.

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“Members of the public, particularly the media should know that no life was lost and that the situation was quickly managed by the police and is under control,” the police spokesperson said.

The livestock market has been opened for business on Friday, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

“The market is very very normal, we have resumed this morning. It is only yesterday that the market was not open, today they have opened the market, everybody is doing his normal business,” the leader of the livestock dealers, Mr Yawa said.

He said touting has been banned in the market to prevent a recurrence of the incident.

“We should not be listening to roumour. Nobody died. We should live in peace and harmony.

“I have lived here (in Akwa Ibom) for more than 45 years now, my parents brought me here when I was four years old,” he said, adding that “Akwa Ibom people are very peaceful and accommodating”.

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