Police Claims Two People Were Killed In The Clash
The Ibadan clash at the Bodija International Market between butchers and police on Thursday has been reported to have led to the death of five people.
The clash was stated to have led to the loss of goods worth millions of naira, some people who spoke with Punch on condition of anonymity, alleged that five people were killed in the clash.
“We were shot by the police while trying to protect our business. They wanted to force us out of the market which is not fair. We were peaceful but they shot at us,” one of the butchers said.
Abiodun Odude, the state Commissioner of Police, however, said two people died in the clash.
The fight started as a result of the order issued by the Oyo State Government to the butchers to relocate to a modern abattoir in Amosun Village, in the Akinyele area of Ibadan and the butchers had refused to vacate the match, which the state government described as illegal.
The butchers, on Tuesday staged a protest at the state secretariat over the demolition of the Bodija abattoir by the state government.
The government had said it decided to relocate the abattoir in order to curb the unhealthy process of slaughtering of animals and on Wednesday revealed that the government stated that a task force has been released to enforce the relocation.
In a move to resist the order, the butchers gathered early on Thursday and confronted the security forces.
Some of the butchers accused their leaders of taking gratification from the government to enforce the order.
Gunshots were heard during the clash at the abattoir section of the Bodija market as traders locked their shops and fled the market for fear of being caught in the crossfire.
In a bid to arrest the situation, as reported by Naija News, the state government announced that the market had been shut on Thursday.
Report had it that a police station at the market was attacked while vehicles parked at the station were vandalised. It was alleged that two people were shot and killed for attempting to burn the police station.
Speaking at the scene of the clash, Odude said, “We understand that at least two people were gunned down and there was an attempt to attack this police station and they quickly mobilised and we are salvaging the situation. The only thing I can tell you is that this morning there was supposed to be an arrest of those people who are selling by the roadside and in the process there was confrontation.”
Alhaji Lateef Olagoke, the Secretary of the butchers union in the state, who represented the chairman, Pa Lasisi Alagufon, at a press conference in the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, said he regretted the clash and the loss of lives and property in the market.
Source: Naija News