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Traders protest alleged burgling of shopping complex by customs

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By Ojo Peter, Ibadan

Traders at Bodija market on Thursday staged peaceful protest over alleged burgling of their shops by suspected operatives of Nigerian Customs Service (NCS). The burgling of the complex by customs personnel in the early hours of April 1 was said to have happened after all traders had closed for the day and gone to sleep.

Investigation revealed that NCS team had arrived the complex at around 1am and beat up security men manning the gates before gaining entry into the complex. It was reported that they burgled all the shops in the complex and went away with five trailer loads of goods and substantial amounts of money. Their operation was said to have lasted about five hours.

Funke Alimi, a trader and victim, said her shop was among the countless shops that were burgled by Nigerian Customs. She lamented that she is already in huge debt she could not easily recovered, stressing that the money invested in the business is not hers but finance gathered from different sources to flourish the business.

Alimi called on governments at all levels to see to the matter, saying Customs had no right to step into the complex and have such effrontery to perpetrate such wicked acts. It was equally learnt that many traders have protested to Governor’s office to express their feelings to the Governor and other concerned stakeholders in the state and beyond.

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