Police reads riot act to street traders

Wabara said that it would be unwise to use force to settle a problem that common sense could easily settle through obedience to the law.

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia state

The Police in Aba on Saturday warned people trading on the roads, around the Enyimba stadium and adjoining roads, to desist or face the wrath of the law.

The Area Commander in Aba, ACP Peter Wabara, gave the warning while addressing a crowd of persons comprising of traders and buyers at the area.

He said that no government agent had been ordered to collect tolls from the traders, who sell their wares on the roads, adding that traders and buyers should respect the law.

The police area commander urged them to be law abiding and desist from selling on the roads or be prepared to face the wrath of the law.

Earlier on Saturday, some roadside traders fought men of the Aba Urban Renewal Task Force and policemen, who came to force them out of the roads.

Some of the roadside traders, who fought the task force men, claimed that they were "Ngwa communities."

They alleged that they came to destroy their wares for no cause, a trader, who witnessed the crisis, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

Another trader, Mr Ifeanyichukwu Alozie told NAN that the traders had last Wednesday fought the men of the task force and burnt their vehicle and a tricycle they hired to work with.

He alleged that when the task force team came again on Saturday with more personnel and were removing wares and tables on the roads and burning some of them, the traders resisted and fought them again.

He said that it was at that point that the army and policemen were drafted to the area to help keep the peace and restore order.

He urged Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu to warn the staff of the Renewal Agency to do their work with human feelings.

Alozie, however, appealed to the government to build the Morning market close to the area, so that they could have a place to sell their wares.

When contacted, Abia Police Public Relations Officer, (PPRO), Udeviotu Onyeke, confirmed that there was a fracas, which involved men of the Aba Urban Renewal Agency and roadside traders in Ahia Ohuru.

He said that the police had done their job and that peace has been restored to the place.

He, however, said that nobody died in the crisis contrary to the claim from some quarters that some persons were killed.

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