BY ISAAC OLAMIKAN
There is palpable tension in the air as Prince Sylvester Eweka, the leader of the Oodua Peoples Congress(OPC) in Edo State, has issued forth a 24 hour ultimatum to the state government established Public Works Guard(PUWOG) to release their(OPC) member believed to be in PUWOG custody or else face dire consequences.
The OPC leader was reacting to the alleged infraction between his group and the PUWOG in Benin City on Tuesday afternoon.
Around noon on Tuesday, November 14th , Ring Road, the commercial nerve of centre of Benin City, the capital of Edo State was in disarray as members of the OPC took over the ever busy area in search of the members of the PUWOG whom they alleged molested and detained their members over what the OPC described as a minor incident.
An eyewitness account stated that the PUWOG men arrested a OPC member and not minding pleadings by the chap he was given the beating of his life which led to his been severely injured after which he was locked up in their makeshift detention room.
Information got to the arrested OPC member’s colleagues who said to have numbered almost 300 stormed the office of the PUWOG situated at the Urhokpota Hall by Ring Road on a rescue mission.
Sensing danger some of the PUWOG men were said to have craftily taken to their heels while some others reportedly removed their uniform to avoid been identified by the invading OPC men who were said to have taken control of the area for close to 30 minutes chanting war songs and brandishing deadly weapons.
Some PUWOG members who were unfortunate to be identified by the OPC men were said to have been dealt with.
However, in a response to questions by the Post, Prince Eweka stressed that the PUWOG, whose membership he alleged is drawn mainly from the Eiye Confraternity , has always threatened his OPC members for working in conjunction with the law enforcement agencies to curb criminality in the state.
“We work hand-in-hand with the security agencies to curb acts of criminality. This has been the problem we have with the Eiye Confraternity members who form the chunk of PUWOG team.
“In as far as we are concerned we will not relent in doing the right thing as laid out in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We are giving the PUWOG a 24 hour ultimatum to produce our member whose whereabout we don’t know but whom we believe is in their custody.
“Failure of the PUWOG to meet this demand will be met with the appropriate action from us,” Prince Eweka said.
BY ISAAC OLAMIKAN