Our Checkpoint Not The Cause Of Accident In Ihiala – Police
Anambra state command of the Nigeria Police Force has reacted to the protest staged by truck drivers in Ihiala, calling for the removal of the police special roadblock mounted against unknown gunmen in order to secure the Police Divisional, Area Command Headquarters and road users along the Onitsha-Owerri road.
Nigeria Police Force in a statement issued by the Anambra State Command Public Relations Officer, DCP Ikenga Tochukwu, identified the driver of the truck as one of the victims that died in the crash and blamed the cause of the accident on over-speeding and brake failure by the trailer truck driver.
“It is unfortunate that drivers of container bearing trailers, under the umbrella of their union, who were misinformed about the cause of the accident mobilized heavy trucks to the scene at about 1630 hours on the day of the accident and blocked the ever busy highway on both sides.
“While the Police indeed have a ‘Stop and Search Point’ close to the scene of the accident, it is wrong to blame the police for the unfortunate incident.
“The fact that only six vehicles were on the queue on a dual carriageway as busy as that expressway is evidence that the Police has been responsible and sensitive to the plight of the motoring public by ensuring minimal delay as it conduct its stop and search operations aimed at protecting not only Police facilities in the area from insurgents’ attacks, but also the general public, who are mostly at the receiving end of escapades by criminal elements.”
“All entreaties made to them to consider the plight of the motoring public fell on deaf ears. Innocent motorists were at the receiving end of this ill-advised blockade.
“The Nigeria Police wish to appeal to the unionists to have a rethink in the interest of their fellow citizens and consider the plight of stranded travellers to remove the blockade from the highway. The Police will continue to explore peaceful means of resolving the imbroglio to prevent further loss of precious human lives,” the Police Press release reads.
It would be recalled over 70 persons were trapped when a trailer truck failed brake and the 50 feet container it carries fell on 4 buses and badly touched another 3 on Friday with numbers of the victims confirmed dead.
The accident occured few months after trailer truck at same Police roadblock mounted against unknown gunmen failed brake on November 28, 2021 and rammed into passengers walking through the roadblock as demanded by the police team as a routine practice, killing over 21 persons and injured several others.
A check on the road shows that the police special roadblock is mounted in a valley like area of the road. From Ezego T-junction to Azia Junction is slopping. This also explained why 5 Soldiers inside Armoured Vehicle died two Mondays ago after the armoured vehicle hit Unknown Gunmen Hilux van at Ezego T-junction and somersaulted severally along the slopping road.
It was also observed that while coming from Onitsha side, the road is very slopping right from the Public school to Azia Junction making the area which the roadblock is mounted that’s in-between Azia Junction and before the Police Divisional Headquarters a valley like.