Palpable fear has gripped the residents of Onitsha and its environs, as touts have reportedly taken over Anambra State, shooting, maiming, assaulting, and extorting innocent road users and residents.
In the early morning of Thursday, precisely 6.30am, a bus driver was reportedly shot on his chest by a two-man motorcycle tout gang who operated like armed robbers at the second gate of Mgbuka Obosi.
A relationship of the driver who simply identified herself as Ngozi. said that the driver bought the mini bus about three days ago and that it was the first time that he brought it on the road for transportation to and from Onitsha.
” He bought it about three days ego and this morning he brought it out for the first time and on stopping at the second gate of the Mgbuka Obosi market, to call on phone the conductor that will work with him, two boys on bike stopped by his side and asked him if he was tired of running away, and the one at the back shot him on the chest and they sped off.
“They didn’t take away the bus or any thing in it but it was obvious that they were touts who pursued the driver thinking he deliberately refused to stop but the driver didn’t know he was being trailed.
Also reacting on the illegal activities of touts in the State, a resident of Nkpor, near Onitsha, Mr. Simon Onuora, said that government should act now by sacking the touts to enable people of the State have hitch-free Christmas celebration.
“Few days ego, mini bus drivers protested against the touts who extort them in any bus-stop they stop to pick or drop passengers. It is worrisome and Governor Charles Chukwuma Soludo should do something now
“On assumption of office he pledged to sack them and eventually sacked them, but they are now back in full swing tormenting road users for no just cause.
“This is Christmas period when everybody is making the last minute purchases/sales and these people capitalized on the situation to extort, maim assault and even shoot passengers.”