Human Rights Abuses

(+VIDEOS) Police Fire Tear Gas On Protesting Students In Warri

Rita Enemuru, Reporting

Policemen, early hours on Wednesday, June 15, fired series of tear gas on protesting higher institution students in Warri, Delta State.

The students, who are of Delta State origin, had embarked on a peaceful protest over the non-payment of their annual bursaries by the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Commission (DESOPADEC).

The protesting students were seen as early as 7:00am along the DESOPADEC office situated along the Warri-Sapele Road, bearing placards with varying inscriptions and chanting revolutionary songs.

According to one of the student leaders, the commission has continued to pay deaf ears to their demands, hence the mass action.

Attempts by staff of DESOPADEC to pacify the protesting students proved abortive as they continued in their demonstration.

A female student, who was part of the protesters, was left in a critical state following the firing of the harmful gas.

Another male student had his eyes badly injured by the tear gas, while several others sustained bruises as they scampered to safety.

One of the students, Ebikeseye Ayabowei, who spoke with Stonix News said, “We have been deliberating on this bursary issue for quite some time now.

“DESOPADEC disclosed the money for payment but we have not received it.

“We have had meetings and different peace talk with the board on several occasions and because nothing has been done, decided to protest today.

“We got there as early as 7:00a.m and we were protesting peacefully, before we knew what was happening, they started shooting tear gas.

“We had no option but to run for safety. They want to kill us because of our own money o.”

Reacting to the allegations, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Delta State Police Command, DSP Bright Edafe, who initially couldn’t confirm if tear gas was used on the students later said “They came and started attacking the workers, were destroying properties, and later blocked the express (way) so they were dispersed with the use of tear gas, nobody was injured to our knowledge, thanks.

“For benefit of doubt, who ever is claiming to have. Been injured should come forth.”

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