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Two cult groups on Friday morning clashed in Port Harcourt, Rivers State over a collection of tax in the market from traders amidst COVID-19 lockdown.
The ugly incident was traced to misunderstanding issued when of the cult groups, Deywell interfered in the collection of illegal tax from marketers selling at Deykpam territory two weeks ago.
Both groups gradually moved into clash one Sunday morning as the former attacked and killed a member of the later, Deywell because they failed to allow them (Deykpam) to join in receiving money from their zone.
An Eyewitness who disclosed to Scannews24 (name withheld for security reason) said the Deykpam boys are exclusively in charge of collecting money from almost Bishop Okoye Market, one of the largest daily Market in Diobu, Mile 3 Port Harcourt.
During the lockdown, most women could find attached spaces to sell their products outside the main market yet the pays the three times hourly tax to the boys assigned to it within the top cult leaders in charge of the areas, including main roads.
The local government Chairman, Victor Ihuowu, popularly known as Voko, who was charged by the state governor to intensify efforts in effecting strict compliance on the total lock-down in Port Harcourt, sent the marketers out from the illegal spots they were trading within Deykpam anointed area.
Thereafter, most of the traders joined other minor traders squatting at Deywell territory which warranted their rival cult group joined to collect money at their none designated area.
The source said, the boys, who they took as invaders, were accosted and warned not to cross into their quarter for further collection.
A few days later, the invaders arrived in the market and shot one Deywell boy, who was described as the only son of his parents. The trouble escalated and degenerated into state threat.
Since the confrontation about 5 members of both sides has been killed including one killed yesterday as trading resumed in the main market.
According to a close source, the boy, who is a member of Deykpam was with his girlfriend in the market when two boys shot him at close range.
Residents of both affected streets have called on the state government to come for their rescue as fear of more revenge lingers within the city. Youths and families are said to be relocating, coupled with the pending warning of total lockdown extension by the state government beginning from Saturday, 17 May 2020.