The tranquility in Ibadan was yesterday upset as market traders in the popular Bodija market were involved in a free-for-all fight over the present situation in the market. The fight was between Hausa and Yoruba traders in the market over what was described as antics of the Hausa traders to take over the control of the market.
Saidi Baoku, one of the traders at the market told Nigerian Tribune the Yoruba traders will no longer fold their hands and watch Hausa traders take their means of livelihood from them.
“We have tried to be patient but we have seen that if we don’t fight for ourselves, these Hausa will continue to cheat us in our own land,” he said.
“After all, the driver of the vehicle in which the 10 traders were was not killed. We want everybody and government to come to our aid and help so that we don’t die of hunger.”
Commenting on the development, Hon. Idris Lapade, Chairman of Ibadan North Local Government said the local government has directed that the market should be shut and traders would be evacuated immediately.
“We are trying to evacuate the Yoruba before asking the Hausa to leave, because they might be attacked if they move out at the same time. The market belongs to the local government; it is not anyone’s property. All we are trying to ensure is peace,” Lapade said.
He added that peace was restored following the intervention of men and officers of the Nigeria Police, officials of the Directorate of State Security and Operation Burst, led by the Area Commander in charge of Agodi Area Command. He said they prevented the crisis from escalating beyond manageable level.