BreakingNews 4/3/16 - Many Dead, Scores Injured in Lagos Market Clash; Market Shutdown, Curfew Imposed

[ Masterweb Reports ] – Over ten people were killed, many injured and scores of cars, shops and houses set ablaze in a clash between Hausa and Yoruba traders at Mile 12 Market and adjourning Ketu area of Lagos, Lagos State. Among the dead were two schoolchildren, traders, artisans and residents; at least 40 vehicles were either burnt or vandalized. Two Churches and over 25 houses were set ablaze and hundreds of residents rendered homeless and destitute. Shops and their entire merchandise were either razed or looted.
Acccording to witnesses, the clash broke out Tuesday after a Hausa commercial bike rider knocked down a Yoruba pregnant woman and refused to take her to the hospital for treatment. The bike rider said it was the duty of the motorbike association that collects toll from them to take her to the hospital for medical attention. Heated argument ensued between Hausas and Yorubas which led to serious fighting between the two groups. The fighting continued all through Wednesday and yesterday with reinforcements of thugs from both sides coming from town to join the onslaught.
A witness who slightly differed from others and spoke on condition of anonymity, said: “The motorcycle rider, a Hausa, almost hit a pregnant woman and people challenged him for riding against traffic. Because he didn’t understand English, he misunderstood them and attacked them, which started a fight. A man, who took up the fight with the Hausa man, stabbed him. The Hausa man also stabbed the man. The Hausa, backed by the soldiers and the police, set schools on fire and started burning vehicles in Agiliti. When they were done, they broke into Maidan community and burnt 15 houses, including a church. They chased a carpenter, Riliwan, and after catching up with him, they cut him with machetes. They poured fuel on him and set him on fire. He was burnt to death.”
Ikorodu road was inaccessible from Ketu at the time Masterweb reporters investigated the incident Tuesday. Police and soldiers were dispatched to restore order while the market remained closed to business as at the time of filing this report. Despite the heavy presence of police and army in the area, hoodlums mostly Hausa refused to leave the area, wielding bows, arrows, cutlasses, charms and sharp objects.  Burnt corpses, some beheaded littered the roads.
Lagos State governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode in swift reaction to quell the crisis, ordered the imposition of curfew in the area of the conflict and the indefinite closure of the popular Mile 12 Market. When Masterweb team visited the market and adjourning communities late Thursday, there was tranquility in the area with heavy presence of police, civil defence operatives and soldiers.
*Photo Caption – A vehicle overloaded with perishable foods heads to downtown Lagos from  Mile 12 market Lagos.
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