Hundreds of residents of Ondo State on Tuesday stormed the Benin-Ore-Shagamu Expressway at Ore in Odigbo Local Government Area of the state, to protest against naira and fuel scarcity across the country.
The expressway was barricaded for several hours, by the protesters who were singing various solidarity songs, causing traffic logjam on the road.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Oyeyemi Oyediran, had earlier met with stakeholders in the state to address the issues of scarcity and inability to access cash at financial institutions and also the hike in fuel price at various filling stations. He had also warned against staging of protest in the state.
Speaking about the development, one of the protesters and youth leader in Ore Community, Prince Adeyemi Adebayo explained that the protest became imperative in order to checkmate lackadaisical attitudes of the government towards the wellbeing of the suffering masses.
Adebayo stated that the crisis on the new naira policy by the Federal Government had been on for three weeks now which has resulted to many aged long queues at the banks nationwide, and government was not doing anything about it.
He said, “This peaceful protest is not aimed at destroying properties nor to take life but it is to express our annoyance to the government of the day that we common Nigerians are suffering. We can no longer withdraw from the banks. We also pay heavy charges at all POS, and many sleep overnight in banks due to naira scarcity.
“Going round all filling stations since three weeks till date you will discover that members of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria are selling the product between N400 and N700. We want government to do something on these issues of general concerned.”
Meanwhile, some commercial banks in Akure, the Ondo State capital and some other towns of the state did not open operation on Tuesday for fear of being attacked by protesters.
A banker, on condition of anonymity told our correspondent that the order not to operate came following a security report that there was a plan to attack the banks.
” When I got to the office today (Tuesday), we were asked not to open the bank hall because of unfavourable security report, so that we will not be attacked,” he said.