Banex Plaza on Lockdown After Soldier-Trader Dispute Turns Violent

Banex Plaza

Banex Plaza is a bustling electronics market in Abuja, Nigeria. However, it remains closed on Monday following a weekend incident that turned violent. The closure comes after a disagreement between a trader and soldiers escalated. This led to an altercation and a forceful response from the military.

From Minor Disagreement to Physical Altercation at Banex Plaza

According to reports, the situation began with a trader allegedly selling a faulty phone to a customer, which led to a disagreement. However, the customer sought help from soldiers. But instead of a peaceful resolution, the trader reportedly called in thugs who attacked the soldiers. This attack included slapping, kicking, and beating, which provoked a strong reaction. Police initially intervened, but soldiers later returned to the plaza in force, prompting traders to shut down their businesses immediately. Nevertheless, videos circulating on social media show soldiers chasing crowds and apprehending some individuals.

Nonetheless, similar incidents of thugs attacking peaceful protestors have been reported elsewhere. In Sri Lanka, for instance, graphic footage showed brutal attacks on unarmed people in May 2022. Additionally, a Punjabi restaurant in the UK was attacked, with calls for swift action against the perpetrators. The attackers’ affiliation in the UK incident remains under investigation.

Response to the Situation

The incident at the Banex Market in Wuse, Abuja, involved suspected thugs descending on soldiers in uniform after a disagreement with some persons in the market. Traders were seen locking up their shops to prevent being affected by a reprisal. Moreover, the military authorities had not commented on the incident at the time of the report.

Escalation and Lockdown

On Monday morning, the situation at Banex Plaza remains tense. Military vehicles are stationed at various points throughout the market, and troops are patrolling the area. Traders who attempted to gather near the plaza were seen leaving after waiting for hours with no sign of reopening.

Furthermore, the extent of damage or injuries sustained during the incident remains unclear. The full story behind the initial disagreement also requires further investigation. Authorities must work to restore order at the market while conducting a thorough investigation to determine the cause of the conflict and ensure a peaceful resolution.

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