Police demand N2,000 to record case
By Esther Onyegbula
LAGOS—A 34-year-old vendor, Ifeanyi Friday, got more than he bargained for on Easter Monday, when six newspaper agents attacked him and destroyed copies of Vanguard newspapers at his newsstand at Golden Gate, Ikoyi, Lagos.
It was learned that the agents’ parent body in Lagos had placed embargo and instructed vendors not to take copies of newspapers that recently increased their cover prices.
According to Friday, “at about 8:30a.m., on Monday when I got to the office, I collected 15 copies of Vanguard as customers would rather not buy any paper if they do not get Vanguard.
“Recently, the agent’s body instructed us not to take copies of Vanguard, The Sun and The Nation because of the recent increase in cover prices. Instead, they gave us other newspapers that did not increase their price.
“Doing business with the few available papers which did not increase their prices would amount to nothing and a waste of time.
“However, trouble started 15 minutes after I got the copies; six hefty agents came to my stand, forcefully took the papers from the stand, and immediately they saw Vanguard they descended on me.
“They attacked me with sticks, pulled me to the ground, broke my hand, and tore the 15 copies of Vanguard.
“But for the timely intervention of a mobile police officer, who was passing by, I wonder what would have been my fate. I spent N2,500 to treat myself.
“As if that was not enough, when I went to Kester Police Station, Lagos Island, to make a report, on Tuesday morning, the officer on duty demanded N2,000 for case entry. When I refused to pay, he asked me to go outside the station.