Destruction of the company’s assets, wounded staff from gunshots, and violation of the fundamental human rights of staff and commuters are some of the fallouts from the invasion of the Dangote Cement Plc by Governor Yahyah Bello’s extra-judicial forces popularly referred to as ‘Government Vigilantes or Government Hunters.’
Over 500 government vigilantes invaded the Dangote Cement Plant located at Obajana on Wednesday at the behest of the State Governor and forcefully shut down its operations.
Cement trucks were also burnt, and many others were vandalized, as they forcefully hijacked Dangote buses and vans.
Market and business activities have been brought to a standstill since the attack was launched.
“No fewer than 27 Dangote staff are currently in bad conditions after they were shot at by the invaders,” a statement from the company said.
The control rooms were forcefully shut down and equipments whose monetary value have not been computed were vandalized. Communication cords were also severed to bring production to an abrupt halt.
The marauding invaders also blocked the roads, distorted vehicular movement, and restrict the movement of people all around Obajana.
“Since the criminal attack, our vehicles carrying diesel have been attacked along Anyigba road,” the statement from the company said.
The victims of the government sanctioned invasion are currently admitted to the emergency section of the Kogi State Specialist Hospital in Lokoja.
Mr. Tijani Mukhtari, 45, who was shot severally in the lower abdomen and in other parts by the invading Government’s thugs, is currently battling for his life, as health workers who were seen attending to him said he was slated for emergency surgery.
Mr. Mukhtari was having difficulty breathing when this reporter visited him, as he was experiencing extreme pain from the bullets lodged in his body.
In the same vein, Aminu Sarki, 43, a fleet officer at the Transport section of the Dangote Cement Plant, who was shot in the leg, condemned the act as illegal and criminal in nature.
Narrating his ordeal, Mr. Sarki said he was inside his office when a strayed bullet pierced through and hit him on the leg.
He said: “Because of loud gunshots by the governor’s boys, I was just hiding inside our office at the PTI when the bullets hit me and got lodged inside my legs.”
Mr. Sarki called on the Federal Government to intervene quickly and help stop the excesses by the Kogi State Governor and his thugs.
Narrating his tribulation, 21-year-old Isyaku Adamu, one of the victims who was also shot, described the invasion as barbaric and nasty.
He called on both the company and the government to resolve the conflict in the interest of the masses who will be most affected.
Most market men and women who spoke to this reporter said the invasion by the government has not only affected the company, the markets have virtually been closed down too because there were no customers.
Peter Dare, a businessman at the Obajana main market described the situation as worrisome. He said thousands of people will be impoverished if the company is not opened this week.
Madam Esther, a tomato seller, wondered why the government was insensitive to the plight of the masses, describing the government as the worst in the history of Kogi State.
“The governor will not give us the job. Now that we are doing petty businesses, they are closing down the company that is helping us,” she retorted.