Five people and counting according to a report are dead in a ghastly clash between Nigerian Army personnel and bus drivers in Ilesha-Baruba motor park in the Baruten Local Government Area of Kwara State.
The report reaching SalahG said the reason for the misunderstanding which led to the death of people was an alleged N100 bribe sought by the soldiers, as they mounted a roadblock in the area, demanding bribe from the passing bus drivers.
The crisis began on Friday, according to a reliable, after a bus driver on Ilesha-Sinawu Road refused to drop N100 for the soldiers, and it led to an argument.
SalahG learnt that during the argument, the soldiers allegedly slapped him and he left angrily, came back and mobilised other bus drivers from the motor park to avenge him for unjustified slap.
In response to the act, the soldiers intentionally opened fire on the drivers which consequently killed five persons, while many others were left injured.
An eyewitness said the soldiers had been notoriously extorting money from the bus drivers for a while and the altercation happened due to resistance by the bus drivers, who are fed up of the harassment.
“Friday was the market day, and people came from several neighbouring areas to Sinawu for trade. Vehicular movements from and outside Sinawu area were so high. So, the soldiers had a field day collecting money from drivers.
“The soldiers on the Ilesha-Baruba highway, which is a distance of 25 minutes, were found extorting commercial vehicles which ply the road, ranging from N100 to N500 depending on what you are carrying. It was while extorting one of the commercial vehicles that the incident happened.
“The driver refused to give the soldiers N100, and they slapped him several times. He then reported them to the motor park, and his colleagues came to question the soldiers. That was how the soldiers shot at them,” the witness, Abdul Ganiyu, narrated.
“The altercation led to the shooting of no fewer than five persons who are feared dead as we speak while others were injured. The soldiers have also fled from the scene,” another witness added.