In response to widespread looting of food stores in the state capital Yola, authorities in Nigeria’s northeastern Adamawa state implemented a round-the-clock curfew on Sunday to maintain order and prevent further unrest.
During the looting, hundreds of residents forcibly entered both public and private warehouses where grains and other commodities were stored, and proceeded to haul away the goods.
“The Governor of Adamawa State… Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri has declared a 24-hour curfew on the state, effective immediately Sunday 30th July, 2023,” Humwashi Wonosikou, the governor’s spokesman, said in a statement.
Yahaya Nguroje, the spokesperson for the Adamawa State police, confirmed that security personnel had been dispatched to ensure strict compliance with the imposed curfew.
In the previous month, Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa and the continent’s largest economy, put an end to its fuel subsidy regime, resulting in a quadruple increase in petrol prices and a significant surge in food prices.
The Nigerian economy has been impacted by recession and the repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic, resulting in significant hardships for its 215 million citizens. Nearly half of the population lives on less than $2 a day, further exacerbating the challenges faced by the nation.
In online video footage, residents of Yola were seen looting sacks of grain, cartons of pasta, and various household items from a warehouse belonging to Nigeria’s emergency management agency (NEMA).
In response to the looting, sources from Nigeria’s emergency management agency (NEMA) reported that the organization has placed its warehouses across the country on high alert to prevent any potential incidents.
Earlier this year, the United Nations forecasted that over 25 million Nigerians would be categorized as “high risk” for food insecurity in 2023.