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  • Extortion: Drivers protest against Police, FRSC, VIO

  • Some commercial transport operators, on Wednesday, blocked the Papalanto-Ilaro-Oja-Odan Road in the Yewa North Local Government Area of Ogun State in protest against alleged extortion by the personnel of the police and the Federal Road Safety Corps as well asVehicle Inspection Officers.

    An eyewitness said that the aggrieved transporters besieged the road, which leads to the popular Oja-Odan Market as early as 6.30am and blocked it.

    The source, who pleaded anonymity, said the transporters assembled in front of the campus of the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, and blocked the road and prevented commercial vehicles from plying the route.

    It was gathered that the protesters allowed private vehicles, to pass, forcing other commercial vehicles to join the protest against the law enforcement agencies in the state.

    According to the eyewitness, a crowd formed in front of the polytechnic gate and the transporters blocked the road, which connects Ilaro to Oja-Odan.

    “The transporters on the Lagos to Ilaro and Ilaro to Lagos route blocked the road as they were protesting against incessant harassment and extortion by the police, the FRSC and the VIOs.

    When asked if the crowd was violent, the source said, “They are still here making noise. The protest has not become violent but it may be very soon, because they have blocked the road.

    “They have been here since 6.30am and they are only allowing private vehicles to pass, but they are not allowing commercial vehicles to pass on the road to their respective destinations.”

    On the reason for the protest, the eyewitness explained, “The transporters are against the police, VIOs, Federal Road Safety Corps, among other law enforcement agencies, whose personnel are always on that road on market days like today (Wednesday).”

    He said a policeman, however, told him that some of the extortionists were land grabbers, whom he stated, always come around on market days to extort the transporters.

    Further findings showed that the aggrieved transporters bring goods and traders to Oja-Odan, every five days.

    When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi, asked for time to gather information about the incident and get back to our correspondent, but he had yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.

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