Posted by Godwin Onyemaechi
Traders at Oshodi in central Lagos have lamented the incessant robbery at a failed section of the Oshodi-Agege Motor Road.
The attacks are rampant between Cappa Bus Stop and the ever-busy bus terminal where motorists are forced to slow down to snail speed because of the dilapidated portion, a trader told The Laurels Magazine
Why this portion has not been fixed beats one’s imagination, another trader said. Oshodi hosts an iconic bus terminal and has earned popularity for its centrality, as well as notoriety for its population of urchins.
Though a state task force raids them from time to time, they soon regroup and continue their attacks.
Tosin Oyetola, who sells near the overhead bridge, said the bad boys have become a big threat to everyone.
“This place at night is a different arena,” she said. “Criminal activities are carried out without restriction. Most of us traders sell here with our hearts in our mouth because no one is safe. Even passersby avoid this route because they don’t want to be dispossessed of their belongings or even endanger themselves, and this leads to low sales for the traders.
“These criminals pick your pocket and sexually harass women.”
Idris Samuel, a driver, said, “One of my colleagues was once cut with a machete for telling his passenger to be careful when he saw that one of the hoodlums was hovering around her, waiting for the perfect time to strike. That colleague of mine spent eight days in hospital and refused to come back here because there was a rumour that he was going to be killed if he came back.
“Policemen don’t respond immediately to our call whenever there is an attack.”
Kasiemobi Okike said, “One day I left work late and was hurrying home a few minutes to 10pm. As I approached the bridge, I noticed two boys giving themselves a sign. I increased my pace and before I could take two more steps, someone dragged my bag from behind. I was alarmed and immediately started pleading to be freed. They told me to surrender my phones and money, which I did. When I pleaded that they let me remove my memory and SIM cards from the phones, the one who seemed to be the leader of the group slapped me twice and showed me a sharp dagger hidden under his shirt. I had no option but to run for my life. It was indeed a terrible experience that left me shaken for days.”
When the reporter contacted the police on the matter, they said the state Task Force on Environment and Special Offences Unit was better placed to comment on it, but the task force referred the reporter back to the police.
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