Four people, including an old man, a child and two women, were feared dead on Sunday in Lokoja, during a struggle to cart away COVID-19 palliatives from a warehouse in the capital of Kogi State.
The palliatives, stacked in heaps at a facility located at the John Holt Market, was forced opened by members of the public, including Okada riders, taxi drivers and market women.
The items in the storage facility included rice, noodles, spaghetti, sugar, among others.
It was learnt that as some agitating youths had first made efforts in the morning to break into the warehouse, but some security personnel, including soldiers, were said to have formed a barricade around the warehouse to stop them.
But at about 2.00 pm, the security personnel on guard were said to have been overwhelmed by the increasing number of people attracted the scene.
The stampede that ensued was said to have led to the death of some people in the crowd who were said to have trampled on as they tried to take their own items.
A woman, who identified herself as Hajia Bilikisu, blamed government for refusing to share the palliatives inspite of what she said was “great hunger in the land.”