By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos
Pandemonium erupted in Igando area of Lagos on Wednesday as some alleged members of National Union of Road Transport Workers ( NURTW) and Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria ( RTEAN) engaged in bloody clash over the control of motor garage.
The War of supremacy between the two warring Unions, which was said to have disrupted Economic and social activities in the area, raged on until 1pm.
It was gathered that one person identified as Lati Bashiru, was shot on his left arm, while scores sustained various degrees of injuries as the two contending Unions, deployed the use of gun, matches, bottles, charms, iron rods and other dangerous weapons, as they battle for the control of Igando garages and parks.
The melee, as learnt started as early as 7am, leading to panic and confusion as residents scampered into hiding.
Eye witnesses reported that armed RTEAN members numbering over 500 men, led by one Jafo, had invaded a major junction known as last bus stop, connecting Isuti Road, Igando bus stop and Olowonla bus stop, from their old Akesan bus stop base, in an apparent move to take over the ticket selling points as well as to retaliate an earlier attack by NURTW boys.
They were said to have met a stiff resistance from the Ogunlaye Olorunfemi led NURTW boys ,which resulted into free use of gun, matches, bottles and other dangerous weapons.
In the confusion that ensured, one of the police officers deployed to the scene, (names withheld), was allegedly manhandled and taken hostage by the rampaging NURTW Touts, until the OPS officer, identified as DSP Maximius Osiehgwu, intervened with police reinforcement.
Our Correspondent reports that despite heavy deployment of regular and SARS operatives by the Igando Divisional Police Officer, CSP Taiwo Kasumu, who was seen armed , sweating and running round the Eight battle fronts used by the daring rioters, many residents were, wounded and some robbed.
A visit to a treatment center along Old Akesan Road, igando, it was gathered that 10 pellets of bullets were said to have been removed from Latin Bashirus gun shot wound, while one Mrs.
Aberejo Oluchi, was being stitched of cuts she sustained on her left leg.
In a chat with the gunshot victim, he revealed that he was shot by one of Jafo boys, who he identified as an Akesan Area Boy, known as Are Saka.
According to him, his offence was that he is related to an NURTW ticket seller called Taiye.
It was also gathered that while the rampaging NURTW and RTEAN members were withdrawing from the superior police fire power, they started robbing residents and destroying people’s property.
Eyewitness reported that an unfortunate woman, who said that she was going for shopping, had her N150, 000 stolen by force, while the operator of a newly opened car wash, near Galaxy hotel, said he lost his I Phone to the hoodlums.
The proprietress of Wakisco Bar and Restaurant, located at No. 71 Old Akesan road, Mrs. Jonathan Ifeoma, narrated how the RTEAN boys invaded her premises, beat up her son and carted away cartons of beer, malts, fried fishes, chicken and goat meats.
A police source told our Correspondent that over 10 suspects, comprising of men and females have been arrested at the various scenes of Crime, including the armed younger brother of Ogunlaye, who was said to have been apprehended with a gun, allegedly given to him by Ogunlaye. Attempts to confirm with the DPO was declined, as he directed our Correspondent to the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, DSP Bala Elkanah, who in his usual manner did not take phone calls directed to his line.