From: Ahmad Ibrahim, Lokoja
Four people including a fragile old man, a child and two females were said to have lost their lives yesterday afternoon, while attempting to grab some Covid 19 palliative in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.
Peoples Daily reliably gathered that the palliatives stocked at some warehouses located at the Kpata market Lokoja was invaded by some youths in the metropolis, who stormed the place as early as 7 .00 am on Sunday morning.
Among those that invaded the area were Okada riders, taxi drivers and market women, who were there to grab their own share of the palliatives, which includes rice, indomie, spaghetti, sugar , among others.
According to the source, some agitating youths had earlier made frantic efforts in the morning to break into the warehouse, but some security personnel including soldiers were said to have formed a barricade around the place to ward them off.
However, at about 2.00 pm, the security personnel on guard were said to have been overwhelmed, as some students of Kogi State Polytechnic were said to have mobilized themselves to the scene, which paved way for hundreds of others who had been lurking around the area, to gain entry into the warehouse.
The stampede that ensued was said to have led to the death of some people among the surging crowd, who were said to have fallen down in their bid to grab some palliatives as they were pressed down, thereby gasping for breath till they could breathe no more.
Some residents interviewed at the scene, blamed government for refusing to share the palliatives in spite of the serious hunger and other challenges in the country.
While lamenting that both the federal and state governments have failed the people, they expressed worry that many casualties may still be recorded as some families have nothing to eat due to economic quagmire in the country.