Investment worth several millions of naira went down the drain on Saturday night, when thugs invaded the premises of Legacy Paints Limited in Emene, Enugu State, reducing the factory to rubble.
According to Obasi Enekwa, a director in the company, the land on which the factory was built, Plot M4, Cattle Lairage, Emene was lawfully acquired by Legacy Paints Limited from the Government of Enugu State.
He, however, alleged that over time, one Mrs. Uju Ohanenye, began to lay claim to the land in a bid to take possession.
Armed thugs numbering over 40, were said to have invaded the factory with two bulldozers, guided by two uniformed men.
Among the vandalised items were perimeter fence, finished products, raw materials, machines and the production building. The invaders were said to have overpowered the security men at the company’s premises before gaining entry to unleash mayhem.
As at the time of filling this report, the whereabouts of the company’s security personnel who were taken away by the thugs remained unknown.
Enekwa decried the wanton destruction of the property of the company, wondering why security agents could not intercept the invaders who chose to operate by night.
While wondering why anybody can resort to such destructive self-help at a time the economy of the country is passing through recession Enekwa lamented that the livelihood of over 200 people who depend on the company for livelihoods has been truncated.
“I am shocked that anybody no matter how highly connected they are in Abuja can take the laws into their hands to destroy investments, threaten lives, destroy livelihoods and deprive government of Enugu State tax revenues,” he lamented.
Community leaders, workers, distributors and other well meaning Nigerians who thronged the site of the destruction on Sunday morning decried the act.
Chief Obiora Okolie, a prominent community leader who was among the early visitors to the vandalised factory called on the state government and the Inspector General of Police to urgently institute a panel to investigate the immediate and remote causes of what he described as “the dastard and barbaric mayhem” and bring the perpetrators to book. He further wondered how a destruction of this large scale can happen without the intervention of the security agencies