Friday, 21 February 2014

Tinubu's Daughter Denies Demanding APC Cards From Traders

Daughter of former Lagos State Governor and the state’s market leader, Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, has said she never demanded the All Progressives Congress membership card from traders as a prerequisite to reopening the Abibatu Mogaji Model Market in Lagos.
A statement by her media consultant, Gboyega Akosile, on Thursday added that no money was demanded from the traders before the market was reopened on Monday.
PUNCH  had reported how Tinubu-Ojo led a team of policemen to the market, popularly called Iponri Market 10 days earlier to lock it up.

Our correspondent had quoted market sources on Wednesday alleging that Tinubu-Ojo demanded APC cards and money from traders before the market was reopened.

Akosile, however, said the allegations were false.

The statement reads in part, “To set the record straight, the Iyaloja-General (Tinubu-Ojo) did not demand N5m from the traders and at no time was money paid to her personally before the market was reopened.

“On the issue of her demanding APC membership registration card, the Iyaloja-General did not ask traders to present their APC membership cards as a prerequisite to the reopening of the market. In fact, only executive members of the Iponri market held meetings with the Iyaloja-General and those few people could not have registered for the entire market men and women.”

Akosile explained that Tinubu-Ojo locked up the market to correct some issues bordering on “poor sanitary condition, defacing the original structure of the market, converting shops to other uses, illegal toll collection by some unscrupulous elements in the market, non-payment of statutory and mandatory fees to the local government and illegal occupant syndrome.”

It will, however, be recalled that our correspondent had quoted Tinubu-Ojo in the Wednesday publication. She said the traders were asked to pay fine.

She had said, “We have re-opened the market. I sent some people to open it. Yes, money was collected as fine, which is the norm in the market.”

Our correspondent re-visited the market on Thursday to speak with more market sources and confirm earlier information.

A woman who sold cutlery told our correspondent that money was demanded from the market.

She said, “The market was fined. Each shop was asked to pay N1,000.”

The source pleaded with our correspondent to stop publishing the matter as it was already generating more conflict.

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