Yewa Traders Protest over Seizure of Goods
Some market men and women from Yewa North Local Government area of Ogun state have protested seizure of their goods worth four million naira by the operatives of the Nigerian Customs Service, NCS.
The aggrieved traders during the protest in Abeokuta said, farm produce including tomatoes and pepper in eight vehicles were impounded and auctioned at the Quarry Road state headquarters of the Customs on allegation of being imported.
The protesters carrying placards with various inscription including “Customs Want to Kill Us, We are Nigerians, Please Save Us, We Are Not Smugglers” among others said the actions of the NCS operatives in impounding eight vehicles with about two thousand baskets of tomatoes and pepper at Ijoun, a border town, as inhumane step against the traders.
The seizure of the perishable-farm produce according to the traders was due to the ongoing partial closure of the land borders by the Federal Government.
Chairman of Fruit and Vegetables Growers and Marketers Association, Yewa North Local Government, Mr. Timothy Eweoba while speaking during the protest said it was frustrating and inhuman to impound tomatoes and pepper planted and harvested in Nigeria as imported goods.
Mr. Eweoba called for the government intervention in order to protect the farmers and traders that invested loans on the business.
However, the Customs Headquarters, Public Relations Officer, PRO, Mr. John Attah while reacting to the protest said those goods were contraband and they confiscated by the Joint Border Security Exercise at the border line.
He said the traders and some fake journalists are only being sensational with the report of the seizure.
Mr. Attah who stated that some traders have in the past been buying farm produce available in Nigeria from neighboring countries also urged the traders come up with the prove that the tomatoes and pepper are grown in Nigeria farm instead of rushing to seek for public sympathy.