Posted by News Express | 26 February 2013 | 12,778 times
Outrage has greeted the humiliation of security men guarding Ladipo Market in Lagos, which was shut down yesterday by the state government for allegedly contravening sanitation laws. Twelve of the arrested security men, who have been tagged Bakassi Boys by their captors – officials of the Lagos State Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit – were subjected to corporal punishment and thoroughly humiliated ahead of their scheduled arraignment in court.
The market is dominated by Igbos and the treatment meted to the security men, all Igbos, has elicited angry reactions by some of their kinsmen on social networks.
Writing on his Facebook wall under the headline “IGBO-TRADERS IN LAGOS PARADED BY STATE AGENTS,” Josh Okeke shared a photo of the hapless security men, saying: “The men being forced to lie on dirty grounds by combined team of armed military and police personnel are traders at the Ladipo Market, Lagos, which was recently shut down by the Lagos State Government purportedly over issues with ‘environmental sanitation’ – and we all know where they hail from.
“Why treat them as mere criminals – for goodness sake, these are men whose wares have been seized/locked up and they are now being paraded as mere criminals!
“Anybody familiar with the Lagos terrain knows quite well that the reasons’ being advanced by the Government is hogwash! If you want to see ‘environmentally unsafe’ markets in Lagos, visit Mushin, Oyingbo, Oshodi, Barriga, Yaba and some other markets which for obvious reasons they are treated and seen by Lagos Government as ‘no-go areas’ for ‘closures’.
"<NB:~~~ *How Dare U Treat My IGBO cum NIGERIAN Brothers Like SUBHUMAN CRIMINALS*...WHY???....__I DON'T GIVE A HOOT ABOUT WHAT ANYBODY THINKS: ALL I KNOW IS THAT,SOMEDAY, 'EMPERO FASHOLA', WILL SURELY PAY FOR ALL HIS SINS AGAINST D STRUGGLING POOR MASSES OF LAGOS STATE,EVEN TO HIS GENERATIONS YET UNBORN, AS WAS ASSERTED BY D BIBLE..HE CAN USE HIS INFLUENCE TO ESCAPE PHYSICAL LAWS, BUT HE CANNOT ESCAPE SPIRITUAL LAWS....Time Will Tell.”
Commenting on the photo, Harry Iwuala wrote: “I am yet to read, hear or know the part of our criminal code that permits Policemen and Soldiers (Task Force) to punish alleged offenders before taking them to court. This inhuman treatment is more than a prison sentence and Governor Fashola must call Bayo Suleiman, Chairman of the Task Force to order. It doesn’t matter whether they are Igbo or Fulani or Ibibio or Ijaw, this is absolutely against the rule of Law in a country that has practiced Democracy for 13 years and counting. NO TO IMPUNITY.”
On his part, Hrm Akunne Emeka EzeabataIgbo asked: “So Governor Fashola can be this inhuman???”
No guns were found on the so called Bakassi Boys but machetes and charms were recovered from them – items which they claimed they were using for their security work.
•Photo: The arrested security men undergoing punishment.
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