The personal assistant to Alhaji Kunle Azeez, a leader of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, identified only as Ganiu, has been shot dead by gunmen in the Idumota area of Lagos State.
Punch Metro learnt that Ganiu (aka Piero), Azeez (aka Kunle Poly) and some security guards, including two policemen, were returning from a meeting around 12 midnight on Tuesday when the gunmen opened fire on them.
While Ganiu was hit and died on the spot, others sustained varying degrees of injury as they fled from the hail of bullets released by the assailants.
Punch correspondent learnt that the victim had been buried in accordance with Islamic rites. A source said hoodlums from the Agarawu area were suspected to have carried out the attack.
He said, “Kunle Poly, who heads the NURTW branches in Idumota, called a meeting of all chairmen in motor parks in the area around 12 midnight.
“When they were done with the meeting, Kunle Poly, the two poliemen guarding him, Piero, and one other union member, left for his car, which was parked at a bridge close to the office.
“Kunle Poly asked Piero to release the car key because he (Kunle Poly) wanted to drive the car by himself. He asked Piero to go to the passenger’s side. Piero turned to go to the passenger’s side, while his boss headed towards the driver’s side. They were all about to enter the car when there was a gunshot.
“Piero was hit and he died on the spot. The union member with them was hit by another bullet in the hand. The mopols with them wanted to return the gunfire when the gunmen rained bullets on them. They all took cover.
“Kunle Poly dodged beside the car from where he jumped onto the bridge and escaped to the other side of the road. The two mopols took to their heels. Nobody knew where the shots came from as I speak to you.”
Punch Metro learnt that there was tension on the Lagos Island when the news of Ganiu’s death spread.
Security operatives were said to have been deployed in the area as business activities were grounded and residents stayed indoors.
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, said Governor Akinwunmi Ambode had approved the proscription of union activities on the Lagos Island until the situation improved.
In a statement on Tuesday by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Habib Haruna, the CP said the decision was made after a meeting with the governor.
“In view of the crisis rocking the NURTW chapter of the Lagos Island and the insecurity it is creating on the Island, the security council meeting today chaired by the state Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, has ordered that union activities be suspended on the Island until further notice.
“We are also using the opportunity to call on the NURTW leadership in the state that nobody or group of persons or organisations would be allowed to tamper with the peaceful security situation in Lagos State and that the government would not hesitate to proscribe completely all union activities in the state if their members do not obey the laws of the land and ensure that their activities do not amount to breaching the peace,” the CP said.