Chiemelie Ezeobi

Pandemonium erupted on Wednesday at the Maryland bus stop, along the Ikorodu Expressway, Lagos, as street hawkers clashed with officials of Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI).

The hawkers, who went on a rampage, destroyed about 14 vehicles as well as smashed BRT buses, after one of their colleagues died while trying to evade arrest from KAI officials.

The deceased, whose identity was yet to be ascertained, on sighting the officials arresting other street traders, tried to run but was crushed by a moving truck belonging to a Nigerian bottling company.

In their rage, the street hawkers damaged buses belonging not only to the BRT scheme, but also private vehicles and those belonging to the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of the Lagos State Police Command.

According to an eyewitness, Ebuka Izuegbune, the KAI officials, with some policemen attached to them were chasing street hawkers from that axis when the unexpected happened.

“One of the hawkers was running and the truck crushed him. The man died instantly as his brain and intestines gushed out. His colleagues went on rampage, smashing vehicles, especially government owned vehicles. They smashed four BRT bus and some police vans.”

Although some hoodlums hijacked the situation as they cashed in on the pandemonium and started robbing passersby, the quick intervention of men of RRS, led by their Commander, Tunji Disu, saved the situation.

However, when the police wanted to remove the corpse, the protesters refused until the RRS operatives used tear gas to disperse the hoodlums and take away the mangled body and deposit it at the mortuary.

Further details later