Traders at Bodija Market, Ibadan, Oyo State, heaved a sigh of relief on Saturday as the state Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi today ordered the immediate re-opening of the market.
Some of the operators under anonymity said that lives would have been very difficult if the government had not re-opened the market as they alleged that the mobile policemen men dispatched to implement the closure have been exploiting them.
One of the operators who sells bean in the market said, “Today, when my customer whom I am supplying beans called me that he needed beans and I asked him to meet me in the market. When I got to the market, I told the policemen that are in the market that I want to sell a bag of beans to my customer. They asked me to give them N500 and after I heeded their demand, they gave me access to my shop where I quickly made a sale of a bag of beans”.
The man went further, “What the policemen were doing is that they were going from one shop to the other and anybody found in his or her shop trying to make a living is forced to part with something. Now that the government has re-opened the market, I thank God that that will stop. We thank Governor Ajimobi for re-opening the market on time. When they closed it, we never knew that it would be open on time”.
According to a statement signed by the state Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Toye Arulogun, the governor explained that the decision to open the market was taken after due consultation with security agencies and all the stakeholders of the market.
Governor Ajimobi said that adequate security measures have been put in place by the government to forestall any crisis and ensure that people go about their normal businesses.
He noted that government would not hesitate to close the market for unhygienic and unsanitary conditions as well as violent and chaotic conduct including such acts that may threaten the security of not just the market but the entire state.
The governor urged the people to go about their normal businesses, praying that God would comfort the families of the victims of Thursday’s mayhem and grant them the fortitude to bear the loss.
He reiterated that the perpetrators of the Thursday crisis would be fished out and made to face the wrath of the law.