Some protesting former militants in the Niger Delta, yesterday clashed with soldiers attached to the Joint Task Force, JTF, Operation Pulo Shield, along the Mbiama axis of the East-West Road.
The ex-militants had trooped to the road at about 7am to protest the non-payment of their allowances by the Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Office and Special Adviser on Niger Delta, Mr. Kingsley Kuku.
The protesters led by the Bayelsa State Third Phase Amnesty Chairman, Mr. Ebi John, were said to have blocked the road thereby obstructing free flow of traffic.
Travellers and motorists were stranded as the ex-militants chanted war songs demanding that Kuku pay them their allowances without further delay.
Shortly after they barricaded the road, military patrol vans and two Armoured Personnel Carriers, APCs driven by armed soldiers allegedly swooped on the youths.
They were said to have shot into the air several times to dislodge the youths from the road.
While the youths insisted on their protest, the armoured carriers went after them and in the process hit a mentally deranged woman who was caught up in the protest.
As the protest continued, some members of the Bayelsa State Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, led by the state chairman of the party, Mr. Tiwe Oruminighe, rushed to the scene.
Oruminighe assembled the protesters and appealed to them to leave the road to avoid violence and bloodshed.
He said blocking the road was not a solution to their plight and promised that the leadership of APC in the state would seek to resolve the issues.
He said the Federal Government led by President Muhammadu Buhari is genuinely concerned about the problems of the Niger Delta region and should be given time to solve them.

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