Traders, hoodlums’ clash shuts Ladipo Market
Hell was let loose again yesterday in Ladipo area of Mushin, Lagos State, as hoodlums wreaked havoc at the popular Ladipo auto spare-parts market following a disagreement between some hoodlums popularly known as area boys and traders.
Although no life was lost, close to 40 vehicles were burnt while houses and shops were also torched. According to eyewitnesses, the quick intervention of policemen from the Area D Police Command and the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) averted blood bath in the area.
The crisis, which started at about 8a.m. over illegal ticketing, snowballed into an ethnic fight between the Igbo traders and Yoruba residents. The angry residents who took to the streets to protest the destruction of their homes, called on the government to relocate the market as they were tired of the violence.
It was gathered that trouble started after the hoodlums scrambled over collection of ticket money from a car that parked in the area, which left one person injured. In retaliation, the market Taskforce, claimed to be acting under the orders of the Union’s President allegedly led the hoodlums that wreaked havoc.
A resident said: “The union is biased and they are the problem here. The Igbos are hiding under the union to wreak havoc. “I usually come out in the morning around 6a.m. to pack sand from the gutter with my wheelbarrow because that’s what I sell in front of my house. So, I had used my barrow to block my frontage so that no car will park there and cover my wares.
“Suddenly, one man came and said I must leave there. He pushed me and people came to settle it. So, I went into my room and then I started hearing shouts,” he said.
A man who claimed his brother was killed threatened to avenge his death, accusing policemen from Olosan station of corruption.
The Executive Secretary of Mushin LCDA, Jide Bello, who visited the scene urged the people to maintain peace, assuring them that investigation would be conducted and those found guilty punished.
Affected streets are Odushina, Oloje, Dramola Street, Olapeju, Oshoro, Akinwunmi and Ladipo Market. Residents in the affected areas were said to have fled to avoid being caught in the mayhem. A police source said he counted 40 vehicles burnt and several others with broken screens. People have taken refuge in their houses as shops were hurriedly shut by their owners who fled to safety.
Lagos State police spokesperson, Dolapo Badmos, who confirmed the fracas at Mushin, noted that there was no single death recorded due to the prompt intervention of police patrol team in the neighbourhood.
According to her, “no single death was recorded during the incident. Four men were injured and rushed to the hospital. The fracas ensued after a fight between two people fighting over buying foods.
Despite the restored calm, shops at the Ladipo market were shutdown throughout yesterday for fears of reprisals. The Guardian gathered that the Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, has ordered full-scale investigation into the matter.