No fewer than 20 persons were yesterday injured at the Oredo Secretariat and Ring road, Benin City, Edo State following a ‘bloody clash’ that ensued between two revenue-collecting groups in the Local Government.
Vanguard reports that the clash which started at about 11:30 am saw youths armed with cutlasses at the Ring road area and the Oredo Council secretariat.
The alleged clash is said to be between those authorized to collect revenue in the council area and some youths suspected to be members of All Progressives Congress, APC, who claimed to have the authority of the state government to take over revenue collection in the council.
The revenue collectors in the council were appointed by the suspended chairman of the Council, Mr. Osaro Obaze, who allegedly distributed the revenue to assist party leaders in Oredo. However, these collectors, who were agents of different political leaders in the council, reportedly resisted the attempt to take over revenue collection by the youths. It was learnt that there were sporadic firing of gun shots at the entire Ring road by the opposing groups before the deployment of policemen by the state Commissioner of Police, Chris Ezike.
The Commissioner reportedly noted that some of the youths sustained injuries, and urged the state government to announce the authentic revenue collectors to avoid future crisis. According to him, “One of the groups said it has authority of the state government and the other said it has authority of the local government area. “Some people were assaulted and I have asked some officials in New Benin to investigate the matter and go after the suspects who assaulted those people,” the Commissioner added. You would recalled the a few years ago, the comrade Governor openly advocate that it would take mad men to collect taxes from mad men, a debasing remark for the peace people of Edo State.
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