Traders displaced as Police take over phone market 


CITIZENS COMPASS —Many phone dealers and technicians in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, were displaced on Friday, September 15, 2023, as a team of armed policemen took over the space used where they transact their daily businesses. 

Citizens Compass recalls that the open space situated at Panseke area had earlier been acquired over 10 years ago by the Ogun State Government for overriding public interest.

On Friday, a team of armed policemen were said to have stormed the phone market, popularly known as Tarmac.

The operatives, who were said to be in possession of a purported court judgement, said their mission was to take possession of the land in enforcement of the court ruling.

Efforts by the phone sellers and technicians to open their shops for business were vigorously resisted by the security agents.

“The policemen shot into the air and even tear-gassed us when we tried to move into the market to open our shops. We don’t know who has the court judgement. Many of us have returned home. We don’t know what to do,” one of the technicians, Ade said. 

Citizens Compass reports that business activities were totally paralysed on Friday as buyers and sellers loitered around with no help in sight.

When contacted, the Ogun State Police Public Relations Officer, Omolola Odutota, said the officers at the phone market were on a lawful duty.

“We are police officers, sometimes we have to do our job. It is not everything police do that will be in the public domain. Those you saw are not fake police and it is not a criminal matter; it is a civil matter. If it was a criminal, we are going to be talking.

“What concerns police with land? What concerns police with enforcement? If there is any enforcement, the court of law has its terrain to enforce it. It is not everything police do that should be on social media,” Odutola stated.

She added that, “if they were police officers that were impersonating, it is a different thing. But you saw so many policemen, so they are on their lawful duty.”


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