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Protesters takeover council secretariats in Edo

Official activities were temporarily grounded in some local government council secretariats in Edo Central Senatorial districts today as a group of youths took over the secretariats, thereby preventing council functionaries and staff from resuming duty.

It was a rowdy situation at the local government council secretariats visited by the news crew in Edo Central as some youths stormed the premises with placards of various inscriptions.

The peace of Esan North East secretariat in Uromi was disturbed as the protesters demanded that the transition committee members should vacate their offices, since their position was declared as illegal by the court.

The protesters were however resisted by some other youths who prevented them from gaining access into the premises. The chaotic situation prompted men of the Nigeria Police to mobilise to the Council Secretariat with a view to preventing the tensed situation from degenerating. The police dispersed the youths from the opposing camps.

The situation was the same at Esan West Council Secretariat, Ekpoma and the Secretariat at Irrua, Esan Central Council as the gates leading to the Secretariats were barricaded by the protesting youths in an attempt to take over the Council Secretariats. Staff of the Councils who reported for duty were also prevented from gaining entrance.

Official vehicle of the Esan West Council Chairman was damaged in the process.

Vehicular movement on Benin-Auchi expressway was temporarily at a standstill.

Spokesperson for the protesters, Tony Okonigene said the rationale behind the protest was to enforce the court judgment that dissolved the Council Transition committees, adding that the continued stay in office by the Transition Committees is illegal and unconstitutional.

Also speaking with the news crew, the Transition Committee Chairman, Esan West Council, Mrs. Stella Okoro expressed shock to see the gates to the secretariat blocked.

A state High Court sitting in Ekpoma on sixteenth of May, 2012 agve a judgment  dissolving the Council Transition Committees on the ground that the committees are illegal and appointed officials should vacate office.

Reported by: Edo Central Bureau Chief, Ferdinand Osakue

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