Traders, shop owners, landlords and other persons with property in and around Shasha market in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital have started to count their losses.
An investigation carried out by Gist Vile in the market on Saturday and Sunday, confirmed that property among which are shops, houses and cars worth over fifty million Naira (N50,000,000.00) was destroyed between Friday and Sunday in the market.
About five lives were reportedly lost as a result of the clash that erupted in the market on Friday.
Our correspondent reports that Shasha market is located in Akinyele local government area, one of the eleven local governments that make up Ibadan.
It was, however, noticed that the market has become a ghost of itself since Friday when the crisis erupted in the market.
Gist Vile reports that the clash started as a result of the death of Mr. Sakirudeen Adeola, a cobbler.
Sources told Gist Vile that Mr. Adeola, a Yoruba man was hit by an object suspected to be a Charm by a yet to be identified load carrier who is an Hausa man on Thursday.
The death of Adeola which was announced at the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan on Friday, prompted some of the Yoruba traders to question the death of their kinsman, which later resulted in a free for all fight between the two ethnic groups.
Gist Vile gathered on Sunday that since Friday, no fewer than fifteen (15) houses and thirty (30) shops have been burnt by people suspected to be hoodlums or miscreants.
Our correspondent learned that the properties were destroyed by jobless youths from both Yoruba and Hausa ethnic groups.
It was gathered that both ethnic groups also recorded casualties as a result of the clash.
Sources from both sides, (Yoruba and Hausa) told Gist Vile that at least five people have died between Friday and Sunday as a result of the clash, though the State Police Command only confirmed the death of Mr. Adeola.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr. Olugbenga Fadeyi had on Friday told Gist Vile that the clash was between two miscreants.
Gist Vile, however, learnt that both the Yoruba and Hausa who have properties in the market are still counting their losses.
The burning and killing in the market according to the two sides were perpetrated by some miscreants or hoodlums within the two ethnic groups, who seized the opportunity of the clash to foment trouble.
Gist Vile gathered that although the Oyo State government, Saturday morning ordered an indefinite closure of the market and imposed a curfew, our correspondent reports that burning of houses and shops continued till Saturday night.
The State Governor, Seyi Makinde on Saturday said he imposed the curfew following the crisis in the market.
Makinde, in a statement made available to Gist Vile through his Chief Press Secretary, Taiwo Adisa, indicated that he gave the order to forestall breakdown of law and order in the area.
He had warned residents of the affected areas to go about their legitimate businesses peacefully.
“His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde has directed the immediate closure of Shasha market indefinitely following reports of a breach of peace in the area.
“The governor has also approved the imposition of a curfew on Shasha. It will run from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m.
“Residents of the affected area are enjoined to go about their legitimate businesses within the hours stipulated by the law.
“Anyone caught disrupting the peace of the community will be made to face the wrath of the law.”
‘A Yoruba trader in the market, identified as Mr. Dele said his shop was burnt completely.
“Our shops have been burnt. We are still counting our losses. We need help.”
An Hausa man identified as Hassan who said he has left the market to seek refuge in other parts of the town told Gist Vile that Hausa traders were also victims of the crisis.
“Yes. Our shops were also burnt. I am going to Sabo now. You know that as a result of the crisis. Our people in Shasha died. We want to bury them.” Hassan told Gist Vile on Saturday.
However, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji, has warned against further destruction of property and killings in the market.
The monarch gave the warning when he met some stakeholders over the clash that erupted in the market.
Adetunji, while urging all the concerned persons to embrace peace, urged all warring factions to sheathe their swords.
“Many of our compatriots have been living with each other for a long time. We grow up and attend schools together.
“People from diverse ethnic groups do intermarry and give birth to lovely children.
“Immediately the report of the crisis got to us in the palace yesterday, the Governor of Oyo State, Engr. Seyi Makinde was the first person I called and we have his promise that appropriate action would be taken as sinners would not go unpunished.”
Public Relations Officer of the state Police Command, Mr. Olugbenga Fadeyi when contacted on Sunday, insisted that normalcy has returned to the market.
Fadeyi, however, was silent about the number of casualties and property that were destroyed.
He did not reveal the number of casualties and the number of property destroyed.
He told Gist Vile that Police presence is evident in the market to curtail further uproar.
Fadeyi said, “Normalcy is returning to the area.
“Police presence is evident there 24/7 to curtail further uproar.”