Wednesday, November 8, 2017 5:56 pm
Taxi drivers in their hundreds caused mayhem in Abuja on Wednesday as they set up bonfires and blocked major roads in and around the popular Wuse Market, Berger and Mabushi areas of the capital city in protest over the alleged killing of one of their members.
The protest which started around 10 results in huge traffic snarl with motorists spending between one and two hours to navigate areas which ordinarily should not take them more than some minutes.
Eyewitnesses say trouble began when a member of the Ministerial Joint Task Force who were at the market to arrest unpainted taxies operating around Berger-Wuse route attempted to collect the key of the vehicle of one of the drivers who parked close to the traffic light junction by Wuse Market, but was resisted.
This led to the intervention of other members of the Task Force who not only invaded the area with about four vehicles but were shooting randomly in the air.
In the ensuing commotion, a taxi driver simply identified as Tony was allegedly beaten up by members of the Task Force who took him away in their vehicle as the situation degenerated.
No one is sure if the driver who was beaten into coma was dead. But the drivers took to the streets afterwards in protest, demanding that the task force should be disbanded.
But the director of FCT Directorate Road Transport Services, Wadata Aliyu Bodinga who is the head of the task force denied that that a taxi driver was shot dead in the mayhem.
The FCTA’s Joint Ministerial Task Force is said to have arrested 378 unpainted taxes and motorcycles between 12th to 22nd of October 2017 in Abuja, while another 255 unpainted taxis and 123 illegal parked vehicles were confiscated within the city center.
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