A young man, simply identified as Michael, a father of four children, has been confirmed dead in Calabar, allegedly beaten by officials from Cross River State Department of Public Transportation, DOPT.
Sources at the scene of the event claimed that the young man who sells shoes by the road side, was beaten by DOPT personnel for selling shoes by the road side instead of having a shop inside the market to house his business.
An eyewitness, Mr Okon, told journalists at the scene of the event that men of DOPT asked the trader to vacate from the road side and while he was trying to do that, they began beating him.
“What happened here today is terrible. This man lying here dead sales shoes in this spot. DOPT men came and asked him to vacate from the road side. As he was packing his things, they started beating him until he fell down into the gutter.
“When the trader tried to get off the gutter, the driver used the vehicle and crushed him to dead,” he said.
Furthermore, angry traders had to convey his corpse to the office of the DOPT, but there were stopped in front of the Nigerian Navy Victory Command, close to the Cross River State House of Assembly complex by a combined team of security operatives.
In the 8th Cross River State House of Assembly, the House recommended the total scrapping of DOPT. However, residents in Calabar have laid complaints on the level of harassment and unwarranted nature of enforcement being carried out by officials of DOPT in Calabar.
But, the sudden appearance of the officials on major routes in Calabar is rather confusing and worrisome.
Credit: George Odok