Less than 24 hours after President Muhammadu Buhari spokesperson, Garba Shehu took to his personal verified twitter and Facebook accounts to rebroadcast with a caption seemingly promoting a call for the people of Igbo tribe of the Southeastern Nigeria to leave the country, crisis broke out at Dei Dei international market in Abuja and over 5 persons have been confirmed by the residents killed in the violent clash between the Hausa Okada riders and Igbo timber traders at the area.
Garba Shehu had on Tuesday night reposted a video where Hakeem Baba Ahmed, the Director of Media and Strategy, Northern Elders Forum told people of the South East to leave the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Garba Shehu accompanied the video with a message creating room for people to believe he’s supporting or promoting the Northern elders Forum call.
The message reads: “Attached here is the video tape in which Dr Hakeem Baba Ahmed, Director Media and Strategy, Northern Elders Forum telling the South East to leave the Federal Republic of Nigeria Peacefully because they don’t want another war”.
Garba Shehu statement generated reactions on his Facebook and Twitter comment sections yet he has refused to alter the statement or make further clarification to what he meant by his words or the reason behind reposting of the Hakeem video.
Though, NTA on Wednesday morning during its news broadcast, attributed words to Garba Shehu, claiming, the presidential aide condemned the Northern Elders Forum call for Igbos to leave Nigeria.
Garba Shehu Facebook and Twitter accounts were revisited, it was discovered nothing of such statement as claimed by NTA was published or posted by Garba Shehu.
As at the time of filling in this report on Thursday morning, Garba Shehu has not deleted the post or make any statement condemning the action of the Northern Elders Forum.
At about 11:30 a.m which is less than 24 hours Garba Shehu made the post on Tuesday, an Hausa Okada rider rammed into a trailer with his female passenger said to be an Igbo woman at Dei Dei International Market area in Abuja on Wednesday morning.
The trailer as it was gathered crushed the woman to death.
The Dei Dei International Market is said to be mainly dominated by traders of Igbo tribe.
Angered by alleged recklessness of the Okada rider, the Igbo youths in the market ran after the Okada man and set the bike or motorcycle ablaze.
Soon information reached other Hausa Okada riders in the area. They all mobilized and started attacking the traders and other road users indiscriminately in the area leading to the death of five persons at the spot.
Some eyewitnesses said one of the persons killed was a pregnant woman.
Properties and goods worth billions of naira were seen in the viral video set ablaze by the angry Hausa Okada riders.
Most of the properties burnt were largely or entirely owned by Igbo traders as stated by the residents.
Almost the entire timber section of the market was set on fire.
Residents said the Hausa persons operated for hours before Security Operatives came to their rescue when Igbo youths have mobilized to retaliate the attack.
“Ongoing clash between Igbo traders and Hausa Okada riders in a very big market located in the Federal Capital city of Nigeria, Abuja. As of now, I’m not sure how many people have been killed,” an eyewitness said.
Also at press time, Garba Shehu has not issued any statement condemning the crisis that erupted at the Dei Dei International Market either on a personal ground or most importantly as a presidential spokesperson.