The Shoprite in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital has stopped operations owing to massive looting and destruction of wares and properties worth billions of naira by the suspected hoodlums.
The shopping mall is one of the malls in Fate area of Ilorin Metropolis which the suspected miscreants attacked and carted away several items under the guise of the popular #EndSARS protests, throwing hundreds of workers back to the labour market.
Speaking in Ilorin with BusinessDay about the ugly incident that occurred at weekend, Ayenitaju Banjo, the Operations Manager of the Ilorin Mall, described the looting and destruction as pathetic and barbaric.
He said, “It is very unfortunate that we experienced this kind of incedent. As you can see, the situation is very bad. Around 5pm on Friday, we had intelligent reports and information from Civil Defence that hoodlums might attack this place and we called on them and Police to help us and they promised to protect us.
“We were here till around 6pm and we clossed the gate. It was around 8:30pm the hoodlums came in with guns and rushed in with force. There was no Police man, I was hiding somewhere in the Mall, they started parking things from 8:30pm on Friday till 9 am on Saturday.
“It was around this time the Police and Army came and arrested those inside the mall.”
Expressing dismay, Banji added that, “they looted and distroyed properties massively. They destroyed ATM banks, vehicles and other items that can not be easily carried.
” For now, operation has stopped, nothing to operate inside here, those that were working here had to stop their job, the state revenue from here every month also will stop and that will affect the state economy. We are now expecting directive from head office to know the next line of action.”
BusinessDay’s visit to the scene revealed that the place was deserted as customers were stopped from the gate and there was no transaction, only workers were seen inside the mall, packing remnants.