Hoodlums hijack protest, free inmates from correctional centre in Benin City

Suspected hoodlums alleged to have infiltrated the ongoing protest against operations of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) on Monday broke into the Correctional Centre in Benin, in Edo State and set free some inmates

Penpushing reports that, the protesters had at about 7am converged at Sapele road beside the prison, setting bonfires and ordering motorists to make a detour, but suddenly hoodlums said to be about 100 stormed the correctional centre.

The armed squad prison officials engaged the suspected hoodlums in a gun duel, as many people sustained gunshot injuries, while the hoodlums succeeded in opening one of the cells and freed several inmates in the process

Penpushing further reports that the hoodlums also destroyed and vandalised some sections of the High Court 4 premises located few meters beside the prison, broke part of the high wall before climbing the fence into the prison yard.

The Edo State Government has, however, imposed a 24-hour curfew across the state until further notice following the ugly development, adding that it became necessary because of the disturbing incidents.

Penpushing also reports that, the Secretary to the State Government Osarodion Ogie, in a statement declared that, the curfew is to take effect from 4 pm, October 19, 2020, and equally directed closure of schools and businesses.

“This decision has become necessary because of the very disturbing incidents of vandalism and attacks on private individuals and institutions by hoodlums in the guise of #ENDSARS protesters.

“While the government of Edo State respects the rights of its citizens to undertake legitimate protests, it cannot sit idly when hoodlums have taken laws into their hands to cause mayhem on innocent citizens and the state.

“By the directive, schools and businesses are to shut down activities accordingly. Those who cannot move safely are to stay put between now and 4 pm till calmness is restored’, the statement added.

“Parents are advised to rein in their children, youths, and wards, to forestall further breakdown of law and order. The responsibility of government is to protect lives and property and maintain law and order, therefore, anyone found outside in violation of the curfew would be dealt with according to the law.”

Penpushing reports that, areas most affected by the bonfires and blockades include Sapele road, Akpakpava, New Lagos Road, New Benin-Mission road, Forestry, Mission roads, Ekenwan road, Second Eat Circular road, Ugbowo, Aduwawa-Benin-Auchi road, Siluko,Airport Road,

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