An incident along the Onitsha-Owerri Road in Anambra State led to the death of a young man, allegedly caused by a stray bullet from individuals suspected to be operatives of the Anambra State Anti-touts Agency.
It was gathered that the victim, identified as Chimezie from Achina, Aguata Local Government Area, was standing on the balcony of his residence near Okpoko Police Station when the stray bullet hit him.
However, the incident resulted in protests by irate youths, who made bonfires on the road, hindering traffic flow.
He was said to have just completed his National Youth Service Corps.
Some sources told PUNCH that the anti-tout operatives who invaded the area in a bid to stop the protesting youths opened fire and started shooting sporadically in an effort to scare the protesters.
The source said: “The youths were protesting incessant arrests, intimidation and harassment of youths in the area by the anti-tout squad, agents of the state government, wearing different kinds uniforms and acting as revenue agents at the same time.
“They always extort tricycle operators while claiming to be working for the state government.
“They collect between N300 and N500 per trip in the name of collecting revenue for the state government.
“It was during the protest that the operatives emerged from nowhere and started shooting sporadically in the air apparently to scare the protesters away, but in the process, the residents and traders whose movements for their commercial and business activities was at its peak, started running for their safety, with some sustaining injuries in the process. In the process, a bullet hit a young man standing at his balcony.”
Another source, a trader, who identified himself as Ozoemenam, said: “It was in the process of the sporadic shooting in the air that the deceased victim, who was discussing in the balcony of their flat, sustained gunshot injuries apparently from a stray bullet and died instantly.”