Seven construction workers of G-Complex Nigeria Limited are currently receiving treatment at Maitama Hospital, Abuja following injuries allegedly inflicted on them on Wednesday night by officials of the Abuja Municipal Area Council over annual vehicle permit levy.
The workers were allegedly beaten to stupor by the AMAC Revenue collectors along the popular Gwarimpa junction in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) during an official assignment. The workers were said to have been attacked with machetes and other dangerous weapons while two vehicles belonging to the company were confiscated.
They were inflicted with serious injuries on their heads, hands and other parts of their bodies and had to be rushed to Maitama General Hospital for treatment. Briefing the media yesterday, the Managing Director of G-Complex Nigeria Limited, Abdulhamid Mahmud Zari, described the action of the revenue collectors as illegal in view of the fact that it contravened the law. Zari said that as a construction company, it was wrong for the revenue collectors to be demanding sticker permits when the company was already fulfilling its obligation to the government in the area of taxes. He added: “The company was registered in 2012 for the purpose of employing Nigerians in environmental projects, construction and other businesses in the FCT, “We have contributed to many projects such as waterway projects in Jahi.
We have constructed a road that leads to Gishiri village and we are also working on a road to AP Filling Station. As a construction company, you must have service vehicles and these are some of the vehicles here at Utako Police Station. “These vehicles on a daily basis move staff and materials from one topoint to another and this company has employed more than 2,000 workers.” The MD also explained how his workers were attacked.
He said: “Yesterday, I was called by the driver of this pick-up that on his way to convey materials and take staff from Idu to our yard in Jahi, hoodlums blocked him at Gwarimpa junction and demanded that he should provide daily receipt of Abuja Municipal Area Council and he said he works for a construction company and there is no need for him to have such receipt. “From that point, these people insisted that it is either he pays the money or they will confiscate his vehicle and because they are in large numbers, he succumbed that he would pay the money. “They demanded N200 and as soon as he brought the money out to pay, they demanded the particulars of the vehicle.
As soon as he showed them, they said the car does not have a sticker which they said is being sold for N35,000. “So he was now forced to call superior officers of the company and when those officers left from Idu to where the issue was happening, before they got there, they had towed the vehicle to their office in Jabi.” Zari said when the senior member of staff of the company arrived at the AMAC Office to find why the vehicles were impounded, they were attacked by revenue collectors He added, “When the staff got there, it was already late in the evening. The moment they saw the company staff coming, they started harassing them. They used cutlass to cut seven of our workers.
Some had machete cuts on their heads; others had their hands chopped off. “Luckily for us, there was a police team on patrol that went there to intervene and helped to bring the vehicles here. There is one particular sad statement made by these people when I came this morning which is that the police are their own and that nobody can do anything to them. “And this appears to be true because as at this moment, none of the operators have been arrested by the police.” But the Head of Operations, AMAC Task Force on Haulage, Light and Heavy Duty Vehicles, Douglas Badi, told journalists that it was the construction workers that started the attack on the revenue officials. He said: “When the driver was brought to the office I told him he should not park as I didn’t want a situation where you’ll start having physical contact.