Naira scarcity: Tension rises as protesters raze banks in Edo, Delta

THE scarcity of naira notes led to violent protests in Edo and Delta states on Wednesday, February 15.

Angry protesters attacked several banks, destroying Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and blocking the Ring Road in Benin, the Edo State capital.

In Udu, Delta State, protesters also set bank facilities ablaze, and according to a report, two persons were killed and several others injured by stray bullets from police officers who arrived at the scene to contain the unrest.

The ICIR contacted the Delta State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Bright Edafe over the killings.

Edafe, however, said there were no deaths resulting from the protests.

“Nobody died. But the miscreants or hoodlums set two banks ablaze. Union Bank and Access Bank. We have so far arrested nine suspects. We arrested five from one of the banks, four from the other bank,” he said.

Three people were reported to have died in Edo State as a result of the protest, which turned violent. However, the PPRO in the state Chidi Nwabuzor said the Command had not received reports of the killings.

He noted that the agitators caused a lot of damage during the protest and did not inform the Command ahead of the exercise.




     

     

    “The Command mobilised officers and men in collaboration with other sister security services, to quell the riot and to ensure that the lives and property of the citizens are protected. They (protesters) have equally done some havoc in some commercial banks, but relating to the deaths you are talking about, I think it is rather premature for me to talk about that.

    “I think it is good for me to wait for the senior officers of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Edo State Police Command and other sister security agencies to return, to give first-hand information,” Nwabuzor said.

    Read Also:

    Protests have erupted in several states across the country.

    The ICIR reported that properties were destroyed in Ogun, Kwara and Oyo states as residents staged protests against the scarcity of naira notes.

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    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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