by Chinwe Okafor
Two enforcers of a fish sellers’ association, Iya Lasila and Bolajoko, attacked a woman selling fish by a roadside market, destroying fish worth N20,000 on Friday, February 27, in Ojodu Berger area of Lagos.
The victim, Esa (popularly called Iya Ibeji), and Bolajoko fought, tearing each other’s cloth before they were separated by some youths.
According to reports, the group had ordered Esa to stop bringing titus and shawa variety of fish to the market, which she had refused to adhere to.
The instruction was required in order to regulate a perceived domination of Egun fish sellers in the area.
Both enforcers had on Wednesday seized about 10 pieces of titus from the woman and an angry mob wanted to descend on the two women, but for the intervention of two transport workers, who rescued them from the crowd.
Lamenting the loss, Esa said, “I just came out today when they (the enforcers) arrived. They scattered my market. I said I was not interested in the association again. Is it by force? They seized 10 pieces of my fish worth N4,000 on Wednesday. They have destroyed about N20,000 worth of fish again today (Friday). They must pay for it.”
Bolajoko said they would not have confronted Esa if she had complied with the association’s order.
She said “They (Egun fish sellers) sell about five other types of fish which we do not have. They met us here and we accommodated them. She is the only person that is still selling titus and shawa, others have complied.”
“It is our chairwoman that collects the N200 contribution. I don’t know anything about it.”
However, Iya Lasila said the association was depriving Esa of such right because she had not been regular at meetings.
“She was at the meeting two years ago. We came here on Wednesday and seized eight pieces of fish, with the hope that she will do the needful, but she refused. Our leader is aware. Ask her whether she has membership card; she does not have.”