Sunday, November 8, 2015 9:57 pm
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Port Harcourt commercial bus drivers and touts erupted in protest today after a yet to be identified soldier shot dead a bus driver who was driving against the run of traffic.
The fatal shooting of the driver by the soldier from Port Harcourt Barracks of the Nigeria Army happened around the ever busy Rumuokoro round-about in Obio-Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State.
It was gathered the deceased bus driver, identified as Michael Nweye, was trying to beat traffic gridlock when he was ordered to stop by soldiers at the Rumuokoro axis of Bori Camp gate of the Army barracks.
Angered by the behaviour of the driver said to be in his 20s,a soldier allegedly opened fire and killed him at a pointblank range. The deceased hailed from Egbeda community in Emohua Local Government area of Rivers State.
The incident caused instant rage among taxi and commercial bus drivers who went on rampage.
Pedestrians and motorists scampered for safety, while residents of Rumuodamaya,Rumuokoro,Eligbolo and Rukpowu who were returning home from church were caught in the confusion as they tried to escape the riot.
Sympathetic bus conductors erected barricades and smashed the windscreens of innocent motorists.
A relation of Nweye, Chinedu Okedi vowed the alleged trigger-happy soldier would not go unpunished
Okedi explained: “He was taking one way as usual, as they used to do in that Rumuokoro. So, the soldier man chased him and blocked him. He asked him to come down from the vehicle but the boy refused.
“And meanwhile, he was carrying passengers before the soldier shot him. So, that was what happened. The elder brother to the boy has said that the family will make a case”.
Nweye’s body has since been deposited in the mortuary.
The state Deputy Police Public Relations Officer, Grace Iringe-Koko, said investigation was ongoing to ascertain the identity of the culprit.
A similar incident occurred on Friday August 7 at Whimpy Junction, along Ikwerre Road when a policeman on stop-and-search duty from the Kala Police Station, Rumueprikom shot and killed a bus driver, David Legbara, over N100 bribe.