Posted by By ALEX AKAO on
The Lagos seaports may soon erupt in violent protest following police shooting of four dockworkers at the Tin Can Island port, Apapa, last week. The Lagos seaports may soon erupt in violent protest following police shooting of four dockworkers at the Tin Can Island port, Apapa, last week.
The Lagos seaports may soon erupt in violent protest following police shooting of four dockworkers at the Tin Can Island port, Apapa, last week.
The injured workers who are now placed on intensive care in a private hospital at Apapa were allegedly sprayed with bullets by officers attached to the Lagos State Police Command.
Newly posted Lagos State Police Commissioner, Mr. Ade Ajakaiye, in an interview with our correspondent at the weekend, would neither confirm nor deny the arrest of the trigger-happy policemen, but said he was more interested in “those that attacked my patrol team.”
Angry leaders of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria who decried what they called “attention shifting tactics” of the police in handling the crisis have however, warned that they might not be able to guarantee peace at the ports should any of the shot workers die. President General of the Union, Mr. Peter Orikolease Irabor, who led his men to a meeting with the Police Commissioner at his Ikeja office on Saturday, told Daily Sun that two of the shot workers, Samuel Eluwele and Rotimi, had pellets lodged in their chests and stomach respectively.
Eye witnesses account told Daily Sun that trouble started at about 6.30pm on the fateful day when the rampaging policemen stormed the port’s second gate in pursuit of local women who often converge at the gate in the evenings for petty trading.
The policemen, six in number, who came in an unmarked commercial bus painted in Lagos colours, were said to have swooped on the hawkers who allegedly resisted arrest thereby causing commotion.
Following the heated argument, one of the policemen was said to have fired shots into the air while his colleagues allegedly snatched the gun from him and fired directly at the dockworkers who had by now gathered at the scene of the incident.
It was learnt that two of the dockworkers were hit as well as two others who were eating at a nearby canteen.
Ajakaiye told Daily Sun that one of his patrolmen was also attacked by the workers, but would not say which attack preceded the other.
“My men have said they didn’t fire any shot, but I do know that the bullets could not have fallen from the sky. The patrolman who was attacked is still unconscious at Ikeja General Hospital,” he said.
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