BEVERLY HILLS, CA, May 18, (THEWILL) – Irate youths stormed the streets of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, Sunday, protesting the killing of a mango seller by a stray bullet from a soldier’s rifle.
The soldier, who was said to be targeting a commercial tricyclist operator, was reported to have missed his target as his gunshot accidentally hit the mango seller.
Eyewitness told THEWILL that the commercial tricyclist had been targeted by soldiers at a checkpoint when he allegedly refused to stop when ordered by the soldiers on guard at the West End area of the state capital.
The soldiers, who thereafter went after him, were said to have taken him for a suicide bomber, wondering why he would not stop for a routine check if he wasn’t carrying explosives.
But the gunshot meant for him missed the target as it hit at a roadside mango seller who died immediately.
The incident however triggered a protest with angry youths in their hundreds trooping to the streets, barricading major roads in the area where they also set up bonfires.
An eye witness, Mallam Mohammed Bukar, who also sells by the roadside, the angry youths later chased away the soldier and his colleagues from the area, alleging that the killer cop did not show any remorse for killing the innocent mango seller.
“People were angered because after the shooting, the soldier did not show any sign of remorse. The youths who came to the area started protesting the killing,” he said.
He said the soldier was nearly lynched by the angry youths but for the quick intervention of his colleagues who taken away from the area after being assaulted by the youths.
The incident disrupted flow of traffic in the area as motorists plying the road were forced to follow another routes as the road leading to Baga Road , Post office and Custom area were closed for many minutes by the angry youths .
Some military men who were drafted with armored vehicles to the area were also forced to turn back as some of the youths started throwing stones at them.