I have personally and officially followed closely, the case of Ladipo market, Mushin LGA Lagos. I assert that the closing down of Ladipo market by the Lagos State Government and the arrest, detention and dehumanizing of Igbo traders in that market is a clear case of oppression and injustice by powerful, primordial forces intent on dislodging the traders, dispossessing them of their assets and taking over a market they built with their own sweat and resources.
This is the culmination of a long-drawn scheme and ceaseless attempts by these self-serving and base individuals and forces to forcefully and illegally throw out the traders and take over their market, in utter violation of subsisting agreements that the traders will run the market for a specified period of time having spent their money constructing structures in the market.
The claims of 'environmental degradation','obstruction of traffic and drainage' etc are fraudulent pretext and sheer subterfuge for what is apparently a case of ethnic persecution fuelled by hatred and the individual avarice of some people who have over the years nursed the ambition to take over the market- and have on several occasions- and up to December 2012, used both the police and thugs to harass, intimidate, hound and even made attempts on the lives of the leadership and members of the traders association.
A section of the media has also been employed to propagate falsehood in furtherance of the dubious agenda of the masterminds of this wicked act.
Those innocent traders branded 'bakasi boys' and currently detained by the police must be released. The issues leading to, and surrounding, the closure of the market should be transparently investigated and truth and justice must prevail!
Advocacy Coordinator Network
on Police Reform in Nigeria