by crossriverwatch admin
A mob in Ogoja in the northern part of Cross River State over the weekend set ablaze a Champion Breweries truck after it crushed three youths who were riding a bike to death in the area.
An eye witness, Matthew Ekawu told CrossRiverWatch that the truck which came from Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital was laden with over two thousand crates of champion beer and Williams Fort for delivery to a local beer distributor and had negotiated the bend at the Okuku junction and was heading towards Mary Knoll College when four youths on a motor cycle were speeding towards the truck on their way to Igoli.
“The truck had occupied part of the road and on the other side was a stationery car and in the effort to avoid colliding with the car, the motor cycle tried to manoeuvre through the little space between the truck and the car but the space was too small and they ended under the rear tires of the car”.
One of the boys was able to jump down from the motor cycle but three others, Oyiho Ogar, John (the rider) and Alice the girl friend to Oyiho who is a student of the Cross River State University of Technology were all crushed by the truck.
“Oyiho is a butcher and a vehicle had just come to deliver cattle for him and a vehicle came to convey him to Garki where the truck that brought the cattle was and he said he was not going with the vehicle but with a motorcycle” Ekawu said.
According to our source, as the young butcher was heading to where his cattle was, he stopped at the girl friend’s place (Alice) and picked her to go along with him. “The girl was with her mother in the house when Oyiho came and picked her if not, the girl would not have died” Ekawu said.
After the accident, commercial motorcyclists operating at the Okuku junction chased the truck and caught up with it some yards away and went after the driver who escaped into the bush. “The driver did not know that some people had ended under the back tires of his truck but someone flagged him and told him what had happened and advised him to rush to the police station located some yards away but the man did not know where the station was and drove past”.
When the youths caught up with the truck they went after the driver who ran into the bush and they descended on the drinks and carted away some of it and drank the rest up till the next day. “They turned the place to a party arena and drank the beer till the next morning before dispersing”
A source at the police station at Okuku said only three policemen were on duty that day and “when we called on the DPO at Okpoma for re-enforcement he said there was no means of transportation so the boys had all night to loot the drinks and set the truck ablaze”.
It will be recalled that Champion breweries also suffered another fire disaster on Saturday when parts of the company’s factory in Uyo the Akwa Ibom state capital, went up in flames.
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