Beans sellers in Iyana-Ipaja area of Lagos State have refuted the allegation of preserving their commodity with Sniper.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that there have been concerns among residents of Lagos on the allegation that beans sellers were using Sniper to preserve the commodity.
The Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service (NAQS) has also expressed fear over the use of Sniper in the preservation of beans.
The service noted that the Sniper beans issue arose at a time when NAQS was close to achieving the lifting of European Union (EU) ban on Nigerian beans.
The Coordinating Director of NAQS, Dr Vincent Isegbe, said: “The substance in question (Snipper) is an organophosphate called 2,2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate (DDVP) which is dangerous to health, if misapplied as a pesticide.
“It is capable of causing death if inhaled or ingested in sufficient quantities. This is because the compound can bind to the lung or kidney and may become carcinogenic.’’
Beans traders aired their opinions on the alleged news of Sniper preservatives, when the Multimedia team of NAN visited the market.
One of the traders, Mr Chigozie Okoye, said his customers had asked questions since the news of Sniper as preservative went viral but it had not really affected his sales.
“People come and ask questions that they are scared of buying beans these days with the news they have heard and different other things.
“But I do not think it has really affected a lot.
“It has not really affected a lot.
“But they buy it in lesser quantities now because everybody is waiting to know what will happen,” Okoye said.
On his part, Mr Isaac Ifeanyi says some customers are skeptical about purchasing the produce but the integrity of the traders overtime keep them coming.
“We have gotten a lot of complaints about the sniper stuff.
“Actually, it has not really affected sales because we preserve our own (beans) very well.
“We have our customers and they still and come, they believe in our sales.
“We do not really have complaints about the news itself.
“It just borders on integrity; they want to know and be sure that we are not doing the same thing they hear in the news.
“We just make sure we assure them that everything is ok,’’ Ifeanyi said.
Another trader, Malam Adamu Bello, also said the allegations were lies, aimed at ruining the traders’ business.
“One of my customers told me he heard some news on Radio about the use of sniper as preservatives in beans but it is not true.
“This is not true; they spread this news to ruin our trade.
“The Malams’ pushing wheelbarrow sell at a cheaper rate than those who own shops.
“Those in the shops sell costlier but those who hawk with wheelbarrows sell lesser.
“They do it to ruin the hawkers’ sale but I insist the news is not true.
“I can chew our beans raw without fear because there is nothing inside.
“It is a lie; such preservatives are not used in our beans.
“My sales have not dropped despite the news, I still make the same sales,” Bello said.