Palpable fear reign supreme among residents of Benin City, the Edo State capital following recent upsurge in robbery, pick-pockets, breaking and entry that have taken over the city.
Some of the residents and victims told LEADERSHIP that the rampant rate people are been robbed especially commuters is worrisome.
They noted that the State Government and the Security agencies, seems helpless on how to tackle the challenges.
The respondents stressed that a situation where the people could no longer sleep with their two eyes closed or go out without fear of been attacked or robbed, pose a great danger to the state.
They particularly noted that the state of insecurity in the State, would have a negative effect on the efforts of the Government to woo investors to the State.
One of the respondents, Mr Elogie Clement, who was on Friday night robbed of N120,000, three mobile phones and other valuables, described the situation as pathetic.
Elogie said he was robbed at gun-point, along Plymouth road, onboard a taxi he took to Ekenwan road, at about 7pm
According to him, “I have heard tales of stories on robbery, especially in public transport lately but never took it serious until it happened to me.
“The sad thing was that whether you are alone in the vehicles or with others, these boys still do whatever they want to without any fear or being caught.
“I took a cap, all alone in the vehicle when the driver stopped at the busy Plymouth road, when all of a sudden, a guy appeared at the back and placed on gun at the back of my head. That was how they zoomed off and robbed me of everything I had”.
It was in a similar manner that one Tina Osagie, in broad daylight, was robbed at gun-point in a commercial bus, between Ring Road and Mission Road.
Aside robbery in commercial vehicles, residents have been robbed of their monies at Automated Teller Machines (ATM), while many shops and homes have been burgled.
This challenges have taken it tool on night life in the city, as commercial businesses now close shops as early as 7pm, because of the fear being attacked.
The robbing of business premises is common in places such as, Airport Road and environs, Ekenwan Road, Sakponba road, Siloko road and environs, as well as Ugbowo axis of Benin.
It would be recalled that the issue of cult related killings have not also helped in the security challenges in the state.
No fewer than six lives, related to cultism, have been lost in the city, within the last few weeks.
These killings took placed around Upper Sakponba, Ogida, Siloko road and Ekenwan road areas of Benin.
The State Commissioner of Police, Babatunde Kokomo, while parading some arrested suspects at the command recently, attributed the killings to reprisal attack, and noted that police was working hard to arrest the menace.
While noting that several persons have been arrested in relation to cultism and armed robbery, he said the police have declared zero tolerance against crime.
Similarly, the Managing Director, Edo State Traffic Management Agency (EDSTMA), Mr Denis Oloriegbe, pointed out that the reason for initiating number code for commercial buses and cabs, was to check against using it to commit crimes.