Cost Of Living Crisis: Soldiers Fire On Grain Store Looters In Nigeria’s Adamawa

A 24-hour curfew is in place after soldiers opened fire on a group of young people as they raided food stores and markets in Adamawa State, North East Nigeria.

Soldiers have opened fire on crowds of young people as they raided food stores in North East Nigeria. 

The raids on government owned grain stores in the cities of Yola and Jimeta in Adamawa State were reportedly triggered by fuel-price-induced economic hardship and hunger. 

Large crowds targeted government warehouses and grain stores, and the chaos soon spread to local markets, where privately-owned food shops were also raided.

The crowds were scattered by soldier’s gunfire, witnesses said.

The number of casualties has not been released.

A photograph circulating on social media alleges that a young man was a victim of gunshot wounds, though HumAngle has not independently verified this claim.

In response, the state government has imposed a 24-hour curfew effective immediately, according to a press statement by Humwashi Wonosikou, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ahmadu Fintiri. 

The Governor noted the “dangerous dimension” the situation had taken, with people being attacked and businesses and homes being raided.

According to sources, deploying armed soldiers was necessary to disperse the looters. The curfew from dusk to dawn was declared to regain control.

‘Panic and disorder’

“We were in church when we heard that some people are attacking and looting government warehouses,” a source from Yola, who requested anonymity, told HumAngle. 

“We had to hurry back home to avoid being caught in the web of madness because there were gunshots at some points.”

Mary Ali, a civil servant in Jimeta town, reported the looters did not spare many shops around the market, including her cousin’s private warehouse. 

“It was like the EndSars uprising when government warehouses and offices were looted. But this was bad because those involved didn’t spare many shops around the market,” she said.

The curfew, according to the government spokesman, “allows only those on essential duties with valid identification to move around during the period.” 

“Governor Fintiri urged citizens and residents of the state to comply with the directive, warning that any violators would be arrested and face legal consequences.”

The current crisis in Adamawa State underscores the growing tension in Nigeria as rising fuel prices exacerbate economic difficulties, igniting public unrest.

The increases in cost of food and other staples occurred after President Bola Ahmed Tinubu announced a subsidy on petrol was “gone” during his inauguration in May. 

The cost of fuel at the pump more than tripled over the course of a few days.

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Abdulkareem Haruna

Abdulkareem Haruna is a Nigerian journalist currently employed as the Editor for Lake Chad at HumAngle. For over a decade, he has demonstrated a passionate commitment to reporting on the Boko Haram conflict and the crisis in the Lake Chad region of northeastern Nigeria. He is a graduate of English Language and holds a Diploma in Mass Communications. Prior to his current role, he served as an assistant editor at both Premium Times and Leadership Newspaper.

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