Pandemonium erupted in Enugu on Tuesday when a yet-to-be-identified operator of commercial tricycle popularly known as keke was beaten to death by ticket levy collectors at the university community of Nsukka along Enugu road.
An eyewitness, Michael Oha, disclosed that the incident forced some commercial tricycle operators to block the road in protest.
The Whistler reported that the demonstration allegedly got out of hand as the protesters were said to have damaged the windscreen of a hilux belonging to the police operatives who were drafted to the scene to restore peace.
Oha said, “The keke operator was carrying passengers. He stopped by the levy collector. The problem was a change of N50, which he was dragging with the levy operator. In the process, another levy collector came from behind and hit the keke man in the head. He fell on the coal tar, landing with his skull. He died instantly.
“It provoked his colleagues who went on rampage. They even located a house belonging to the contractor handling the levying business and damaged it. Police came later, and the riders confronted them as well.
“The council chairman of Nsukka LGA, Mr Cosmas Ugwueze, was also there. He tried his best to calm the nerves of the keke riders.”
However, an executive of the keke riders’ association, who declined to be mentioned, called on the government and relevant agencies to look into the issue.
“We want justice over this matter. We expect the governor’s intervention. The man they killed is the breadwinner of his young family. He is from Eha-Alumona,” he said.
When contacted, the police public relations officer, Enugu State Police Command, ASP Daniel Ndukwe, confirmed the incident.
He said, “The lifeless body of the tricyclist has been deposited in the mortuary for preservation and autopsy, after he was confirmed dead by medical doctors in a nearby hospital where he was rushed to.
“Meanwhile, three suspects have been arrested in connection with the incident and investigations ongoing please.”