By Peter Duru – Makurdi
Two suspected motorbike thieves were Sunday morning burnt to death by mobs in two separate locations in Makurdi, the Benue state capital.
Vanguard gathered that the suspects had attempted to snatch the motorbikes of two commercial motorcycle operators, also known as Okada, at gunpoint at the Wurukum and Gyado villa areas of the town when their victims raised the alarmed that attracted the mobs.
According to an eyewitness at the Wurukum incident who spoke on condition of anonymity, a middle aged man had flagged down an Okada rider opposite the popular Suswam Thank You Primary School, at about 6:30am pretending to be heading towards the Wurukum roundabout.
“When the Okada rider stopped, he pulled a gun on the rider and asked him to come down and hand the bike over to him.
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“The rider engaged him in an argument and quickly raised the alarm that attracted the attention of people in the neighborhood who rushed to the scene, caught hold of him and after beating him to a pulp set him ablaze,” he added.
Meanwhile, a similar scenario also played out at Gyado Villa area of the town, close to the Benue State University Teaching Hospital, BSUTH, Makurdi, at about 7am where an Okada rider was also flagged down by another young man who pulled out a gun and asked him to surrender his Honda motorcycle.
According to the eyewitness, “he was however overpowered by his victim who with the assistance of some youths in the area got him tied up and set ablaze.”
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Deputy Superintendent, DSP, Catherine Anene who confirmed the Wurukum incident however frown at the resort to jungle juice by the people warning that it was wrong for anyone to take the laws into his or her hands.