Contention as Customs attack Lagos market, truck away rice, cash

Oyo dealers fight for the time being attack of rice stores

Discussion has followed the intrusion of the Better Life part of the Ikotun Market in Lagos State by men of the Nigeria Customs Service.

While a portion of the brokers guaranteed that the police officers trucked away neighborhood rice, including the cash they kept in their shops, the office said just unfamiliar rice pirated into the state were removed.

The occurrence occurred around 1am on Wednesday, March 24, 2021.

A portion of the dealers, who addressed one of our reporters, asserted that the authorities took no less than 592 sacks of rice and N5m money.

They asserted that the men were joined by equipped officers, adding that they broke the locks of their shops.

A merchant, Wasiu Ayinde, said he rushed to the scene subsequent to getting data on the intrusion, adding that he was taken shots at when he questioned the authorities.

He said, “I just sell nearby rice. I have a machine that I use for the creation of neighborhood rice in Minna, Niger State. Since the Federal Government said we ought not sell unfamiliar rice once more, I quit selling and zeroed in on neighborhood rice.

“I was called around 1am that traditions authorities were on the lookout and that they were burgling shops, however I didn’t focus since I was not selling booty. Another call came in around 2am that every one of my products had been removed. I got up quickly, mounted my bike and went to the market.

“On getting to the market, I saw that they had pressed every one of the 341 packs of rice in my shop, so I began shouting at the authorities that I was a nearby rice seller. They began shooting and didn’t care either way if I was hit. My significant other and I needed to run for our lives; we got harmed simultaneously.

“When they left and we went to the shop, I found that the N600,000 in the shop was likewise gone. I have been at home since that day in light of the fact that there isn’t anything else for me to do.”

Another merchant, Ogbonanya Ngene, said separated from the 246 sacks of rice taken from his shop, the amount of N1,236,000 he needed to store in a bank the next day was absent.

A rice seller, Dickson Ogbonna, questioned why the traditions men would break into the shops past midnight without notice or any court order.

He said, “Around 1am, my sibling considered me that traditions authorities accompanied fighters to the market to pack our merchandise. I attempted to surge down, yet my family held me down till around past 2am. At the point when I arrived, I discovered that everything in my shop was no more. They gathered 78 sacks of rice, which cost about N24,000 each and removed N278,000.”

The dealers’ legal advisor, Saidi Sanni, in a letter dated March 29, 2021, and routed to the Comptroller-General of the NCS, requested the arrival of the merchants’ products.

The letter read to some degree, “Our customers have been delivered monetarily sad without methods for vocation by men of the Nigeria Customs Service drove by one Charles. It is deplorable that traditions men permitted themselves to be utilized as willing instruments of illicitness and mistreatment under the dishonorable appearance of looking for unfamiliar rice.”

While undermining prosecution, he pledged to appeal to the National Assembly, the National Humans Rights Commission and the Presidency over the matter.

The Public Relations Officer, Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Ikeja, Theophilus Duniya, affirmed that men of the unit did the assault

Duniya said, “I need you to tell individuals from the public that our laws empower officials to complete tasks upon sensible doubt. The law engages customs to move into any design or stockroom without a court order. In the event that the retailers have authentic claims concerning the deficiency of cash and the capture of neighborhood rice, they can approach to submit a question and it will be investigated.”

In a connected turn of events, distressed brokers at the famous Bodija Market in Ibadan, Oyo State, on Thursday, challenged the announced for the time being attack of their stores at the Arisekola Shopping Complex, Bodija, by men of the Nigeria Customs Service.

The fighting merchants, who rioted on Thursday, portrayed the activity as theft, thinking about the time and way of the activity.

They were said to have raged the Customs House, Oyo/Osun Command, in the Ikolaba region of the city.

One of the dealers, who recognized himself as Alhaji A.A. Waris, said, “This is getting insufferable for us. It is demoralizing that what we are encountering here isn’t going on in the north. For what reason will customs break into our stores in our nonattendance and remove our merchandise?

“Where were the traditions officials when we purchased the rice? The greater part of the stocks are neighborhood, yet we re-stowed them to look like imported rice since individuals incline toward unfamiliar rice. We beg President Muhammadu Buhari to alert the authorities before they turn Bodija market to a war zone.”

The oppressed brokers were said to have taken their dissent to the Governor’s Office at the Oyo State Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan, for government mediation.

The Babaloja of Bodija Market, Mr Ismaila Jimoh, said the traditions officials raged the market after the merchants left their shops.

He expressed, “When they came, they broke into the shops and trucked away sacks of rice, vegetable oil and soya beans. A few brokers said the cash they kept inside certain sacks of rice was taken by the men. At the point when our kin went to their office to dissent, they said it was from their central command. They even shot discharges.”

The Public Relations Officer, NSC, Oyo/Osun Command, Mr Olukayode Wet, said the assault was not completed by men of the order, saying, “it probably come from the base camp.”

“They fought to our office, however everything has been settled,” he added.

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