Northern Nigerian Breaking News

Farmers, traders lament extortion by security operatives in Kebbi

Farmers and traders travelling through Bagudo in Bagudu Local Government Area of Kebbi on Sunday lamented incessant extortion by security agencies at various checkpoints along road.

The road links Nigeria with Benin Republic.

“From Tsamiya Market, a grain supplier loading a truck with 600 bags of maize or millet has to pay extortion of not less than N600,000 to be allowed to reach Argungu and Birnin Kebbi .

“We pay N1,000 per 100kg bag of grains loaded in trucks, and N500 for a bag on a motorcycle. Alhaji Tukur Muhammad, Secretary of Amana Farmers and Grains Suppliers Association of Nigeria in the area said.

Read Also: BREAKING: Senate confirms 11 Supreme Court justices

elsamad new

He attributed the hike in the prices of farm produce, goods, and other essential items to extortion by security operatives in the area.

“Even if you are not carrying anything on your motorcycle, but you going to the market, you have to pay an extortion of N300.

“We are citizens of this country; as farmers and marketers, we are always taking the blame of not doing enough to reduce prices of the essential commodities.

“Unknown to many people, it is not our making. It is this extortion that has been contributing a lot the hike in prices of commodities,’’ Muhammad stressed.

Read Also: 2024: Tinubu orders probe of humanitarian ministry over alleged fraud

He urged the state government to enforce its collection of Internally Generated Revenue and prevent all illegal revenue collections and extortions.

“This will serve as a safeguard to all people against illegal collection of revenue and enable the state government to generate what ought to go its coffers,’’ the association’s scribe said.

In his remarks, Chairman of the association, Alhaji Rabi’u Mainasara, also lamented the extortion.

“From Bagudu to Tsamiya, they have mounted 44 checkpoints on the road where each trader or farmer must pay certain amounts of money at every checkpoint before he is allowed to go through.

“The security agencies comprise the Nigeria Customs Service, the Nigeria Police Force, the Nigeria Immigration Service and the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps,’’ Mainasara said.

“Security operatives posted to man Maje, Saranfo, and Wara Tsamiya checkpoints on the road to the border with Benin Republic in Bagudo Local Government Area also extort residents of the area,’’ he also said.

Mainasara appealed to the federal and Kebbi governments, and heads of security agencies concerned to intervene to stop the practice so that people would not resort to self-help.

Read Also: Inside Abuja community where residents share contaminated water with cattle, without access to healthcare

On his part, Alhaji Abubakar Usman-Tsamiya, a councilor in the area, lamented that residents were angered by the extortion.

He noted that the people would have revolted but for the intervention of some stakeholders.

“We are calling on Kebbi government to pay attention to this Tsamiya Market.

“This market is an international market that serves people from Nigeria and Benin Republic. The market is congested and it has no space to accommodate the people trooping in for buying and selling.

“The latest Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) report released by the National Bureau of Statistics rated Kebbi low in IGR collection.

“The government can expand the market to international standard, mobilize its revenue collection staff and use the market to augment its IGR base,’’ he said.

When contacted, police spokesman in the state, SP Nafi’u Abubakar, denied knowledge of the extortion but said it would be investigated.

“I don’t know of that situation but I know there was an incident on Thursday on Bagudu-Tsamiya Road where there was a blockade and members of the public were complaining about extortion by security agencies.

“On hearing about the situation, Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Chris Aimionowane, instructed the commander in the area to intervene and the latter acted swiftly to calm the situation.

“We are still waiting for the feedback from our commander in the area,’’ Abubakar said. (NAN)#


Comments are closed.