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Construction workers riot in Lagos over Covid-19 lockdown

Construction workers riot in Lagos over Covid-19 lockdown


Dozens of workers at a construction site, including that of the refinery built by Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, revolted on Monday against the containment measures in Lagos, the economic capital of Nigeria.

“The employees rose up to protest against the containment measures because they want to return to work,” Bala Elkana, a spokesman for the local police, told AFP.

“They injured five policemen and vandalised two nearby police stations,” he said, pointing out that 51 rioters had been arrested and that they would be brought to justice. A spokesman for the Dangote refinery currently under construction in the Lekki district confirmed the incident.

The 20 million inhabitants of Lagos, a sprawling megalopolis, have been ordered to stay at home since 30 March in an attempt to combat the spread of the coronavirus in the country.

However, these containment measures, also applied in several other federal states, are extremely painful for the vast majority of the population, who depend on the informal economy.

Millions of people no longer have access to food in the country, and depend on meagre food distributions to survive.

Nigeria had nearly 1,300 officially reported cases of coronavirus infection and 40 deaths on Monday, but many voices are being raised to denounce the insignificant number of tests carried out in the most populous country in Africa with its 200 million inhabitants.


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