A commercial vehicle driver, Amobi Igwe, was on Wednesday killed by a trigger-happy officer of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Eke Richard.
The incident happened at the tollgate area of the Umuahia-Aba Expressway in Umuikea, Isialangwa South Local Government Area of Abia State around 7.10am, while the victim was conveying food items, like rice and tomatoes, to Aba.
The NSCDC officer was alleged to have demanded a bribe from the driver, who reportedly refused to part with any money.
Richard was alleged to have aimed his rifle at the driver and threatened to shoot him if he refused to hand over the key of the vehicle to him.
Sources said the middle-aged driver demanded to know his offence, but the NSCDC officer allegedly shot him at a close range and ran into the police station near the Umuikaa junction to escape mob attack.
The state Commandant of the NSCDC, A. C. Nwannukwu, confirmed the incident in a statement, stating that the driver from Ishiagu in Ebonyi State, was not conveying foodstuffs and allegedly refused to stop when asked to do so.
According to him, Amobi sped off dangerously, skidded over the barricade and brushed the officer with the car.
Nwannukwu added that at that point, Richard fired at the vehicle’s tyres, but “unfortunately, the bullet strayed and hit the driver, leaving him seriously wounded. He was subsequently rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was confirmed dead.”
Meanwhile, the Coalition of South-East Youth Leaders has demanded the immediate arrest, dismissal and prosecution of Richard, describing his action as “barbaric and wicked.”
We condemn in the strongest term the killing of the driver by the NSCDC operative. We demand the immediate dismissal, arrest and prosecution of the NSCDC personnel and the team that caused the untimely death of this young man, who had a family and children to take care of,” the group said in a statement by its President-General and Secretary-General, Goodluck Ibem and Kanice Igwe, respectively.