There has been pandemonium at the Umuahia Timber market along Ahiaeke road in Abia State after trouble broke out over annual levy.
It was learnt that trouble started after traders refused to pay an annual levy of N18,000 imposed by the Abia State Internal Revenue Board.
A resident told Daily Trust that the state revenue board ordered the traders who refused to pay the levy to close their shops.
However, the traders put up resistance and some vigilantes who were there to enforce the order got involved.
The resident said during the faceoff, the vigilantes shot a trader identified as ‘Indomie’, who later died.
Five others were said to have sustained injuries.
The vigilante was said to have provoked the traders who retaliated by burning the office and vehicles belonging to the local guards.
Reacting to the crisis, the state government condemned the destruction of the Abia Vigilante Office and others.
According to the Secretary to the State Government, Chris Ezem, the police have been asked to commence investigation.
“The impunity of burning buildings and other public institutions must stop forthwith, as arson remains a very serious crime against the state and humanity, which attracts severe consequences under our laws.
“Government will promptly discipline any Abia Vigilante Service personnel who harasses or intimidates citizens,” the statement read.