Proceedings at the distribution of the Federal Government’s ‘Trader Moni’ loan came to an abrupt end on Tuesday in Abeokuta, Ogun, as some hoodlums stormed the Lafenwa Market, venue of the programme, to disrupt it.
The Trader Moni scheme is a Federal Government social intervention programme which provides interest-free loans of N10,000 at the first instance to micro enterprises across the country.
The programme was, however, disrupted by hoodlums suspected to be political thugs after they whisked away the market’s woman leader to an unknown place after dispersing the traders.
A check by the News Agency of Nigeria revealed that the hoodlums arrived at the venue when the registration of the market women was on-going and subsequently stopped proceedings.
Some of the market women who spoke with NAN correspondent at the venue expressed disappointment at the development.
A pepper seller, who simply identified herself as Morenikeji, told NAN that the Chairman of Abeokuta North-West Local Council Development Area, Hon. Monsuru Shorunke, led those who chased away the market men and women before they eventually took away the market woman leader.
NAN reports that the woman leader had since returned.
But when contacted, Shorunke confirmed to NAN in a telephone interview that he led some people to Lafenwa to disperse a gathering where some politicians were giving money to market women in exchange for their Permanent Voters Cards.
He said: “I was in front of the governor (Ibikunle Amosun) when we heard that some people came to Lafenwa market collecting people’s PVCs from the traders with their names and PVC numbers.
“The governor said we should go out and find out.
“It was Governor Amosun that sent us. I was in front of the governor when we heard the information.
“So, I collected Iyaloja’s phone number from Hon. Akintona. We took Iyaloja to the governor’s house along with Babaloja of Lafenwa.
“We believe it was wrong for them to come and collect people’s PVCs with numbers before election day. That was what they came to do at Lafenwa.
“My message is that we should be vigilant, not only the electorate, but all the politicians in Ogun State.
“We must be vigilant. They want to give them money because of the coming election and it is wrong.”