A grocery store owner, Fatima Lawal, said in less than one year of moving into her shop, her store has been burgled by robbers more than three times.
Some traders in Muslim, Oluyole local government area in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, have cried out to the state government to help curtail the incessant armed robbery attacks on their stores.
It was learnt that the traders lamented that no week has gone by without recording case of theft, break-in and cry of loss of property to armed robbers.
A grocery store owner, Fatima Lawal, said in less than one year of moving into her shop in Muslim in Ibadan, her store has been burgled by robbers more than three times.
She said: “It was a total loss for me when my store was burgled. My freezers, generator, varieties of soft drinks and other items were stolen. In fact the entire store was cleared. And it was the same sad story when they burgled my store for the second and third time.
“Although Muslim is highly populated and so it is a nice location for trading but the frequent robbery attack is killing and if nothing is done urgently to arrest the ugly trend, traders in that axis could be sent out of business earlier than expected.”
Speaking on her ordeal, another shop owner simply identified as Cecilia, said that she would not forget Sunday, December 9, in her life.
She said: “Muslim is notoriously known for frequent robbery attack. I have lost everything to the burglars who conveniently came into the area in a bus and carted away all our wares without being caught.
“I left home after the day’s sales only to return the following day to meet my shop empty. Poverty is at the basis of all the crime happening in that community because there are many lower income earners and poor people in that axis.
“But what is the government doing to end this insecurity of lives and property? The essence of governance is to improve on the standard of living of the people but here in Oyo State, we live more in abject poverty and fear of our property being lost to thieves.
‘There is hardly a week that you will not hear a case of an attempted break-in or that a shop has been burgled in Muslim. What they do is to watch you fill your store with wares and before the end of that week, everything would be gone.
“What is the work of the police patrol team? The Oyo state anti-robbery squad is there, what are they doing? I am appealing to them to comb in and around Muslim community and fish out the bad among the people that want to ruin us.”
A mechanic, Mukaila Isiaka, who works at the mechanic village in Muslim, however, said that the robbers dare not come to his workshops.
He said: “Robbers dare not come to our workshop. I am very sure they wouldn’t want Ogun (god of iron) to strike them dead. I have been hearing cases of theft all around Muslim but I think their concentration is on the stores.
“They came in the mid of the night and stole everything in that store. There was a time they came into a store to steal baby diapers, flasks, hanger and baby items. It seems to me that the wife of one of the thieves gave birth and could afford to buy those items for the new born.
“Sincerely, this is troubling, those that are affected sleep with an eye closed. They are afraid of filling their shops with wares for the fear of losing them to thieves.
Some of the shops have a night guard.
“For instance, there is a pharmacy store down the road; it has a security guard that watches over the store. But how many of these people could afford to pay security guards? How much are they earning?
“The easiest way out is for the government to establish either a police post in Muslim community or mount 24hour surveillance in the area. I think this will help curb the frequent cases of theft.”
Efforts by Legit.ng to speak to Oyo state police command, SP Adekunle Ajisebutu to confirm the reports, did not yield positive results.