[From CHUKS EZE, Enugu]
It was pandemonium in Enugu as hooded men suspected to be Tuesday Sit-at-Home enforcers, reportedly, came hard on passersby and commuters in Emene, near the Akanu-Ibiam International Airport (AIIA), burning vehicles and manhandling people in the process.
This was as several Senior Secondary Three (SS III) students were forced to trek to and from their exam centres to write their WAEC Chemistry practical examination.
The unknown men were said to have stormed the area in two Toyota Sienna buses and shooting sporadically in the air before pouncing on violators of the no movement order.
At least two buses were completely razed by the attackers, including a commercial bus and a fully loaded bread retailer bus, with registration number ENU-82-ZK.
When The Oracle Today visited the area, in front of Emenite Manufacturing Limited, fire had already reduced the white bread retailer bus together with the loafs of bread.
Our correspondent gathered that the unknown men had dragged the driver out of the vehicle, after double-crossing him, and beating him repeatedly before asking him to flee.
“They blocked the bread bus driver with their Sienna, dragged him out and slapped him severally.
“They asked why he had ignored the no movement order. The man was so frightened and trembling that he could not even utter a word. They beat him up and allowed him to run away.
“They did the same thing to the other commercial bus, Keke (commercial tricycle) driver and all the people that they apprehended.
“They forcefully pulled the drivers out and after the occupants of the vehicles run away, they burnt the vehicles,” the middle-aged eyewitness, who preferred anonymity said.
All efforts to extract comments from the Enugu Police Command proved abortive. The Police Public Relations Officer of the command, Daniel Ndukwe, did not pick up calls that our correspondent put across to him. He did not also return the WhatsApp chats that were put across to his phone, till the time of filing this story.
Meanwhile, The Oracle Today observed that many SSCE candidates experienced immense hardship while going to and from their exam centres today (Tuesday).
Our correspondent witnessed several of the students trekking home, under the scotching sun, after writing their practical examinations. It took our Correspondent to convey some of the candidates home, from different locations.
Incidentally, although many of the students knew about Mondays’ movement restriction order, but they were ignorant of the reason for the Tuesday session.
According to Somtochukwu, Nnamdi and Mike, students of Army Day Secondary School, they heard that Tuesday’s had been added to the Monday weekly sit-at-home order. It was same notion for their counterparts from Solid Foundation Group of schools, Enugu, as well as those of Modern Ideal College (MIC), Enugu.
They pleaded with the IPOB to consider the future of Ndigbo by allowing the ongoing WAEC examinations to run unhindered.
It would be recalled that the IPOB leadership had, reportedly, issued the Tuesday’s, sit-at-home order throughout Igboland in honour of those that allegedly, lost their lives during the military invasion of Afara, Abia State home of the group’s leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, in September 14, 2020.
It was gathered that the order received maximum compliance across Enugu State as all major and minor roads, markets, public and private offices were completely deserted.
However, the IPOB has, in a statement, distanced the group from any sit-at-home enforcement, vowing to fish out and deal with those hiding under its name to cause trouble.
A statement signed by the spokesman of the group, Emma Powerful and distributed to journalists in Enugu read, in part:
“We the global family of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) ably led by our great leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, wish to reiterate once again, that we have no other sit-at-home order after 14th September.
“Any other purported sit-at-home including the suspended Monday order is not recognized by us.”