Coronavirus: Banks empties ATM, POS operators close shops over increasing armed robbery in Lagos

Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu


Signs of security collapse during the lockdown in Lagos and Ogun states in the preventive measures against the spread of coronavirus are becoming manifest in the suburb of the states. Apart from the restriction of movement order, citizens resident in the outskirt or border communities of Lagos and Ogun states are celebrating the Easter Sunday on empty stomach. Many who went to the banks to make withdrawals from the ATM machines were frustrated as the machine were said to be empty of cash and were not dispensing.

Security personnel at some of the banks explained to the people that the bank had taken the measure to reduce the risk of armed robbery attacks in the areas. Several people had to drive to the heart of the city to make withdrawal from the ATM.

Others who went to POS operators as alternatives, were more frustrated as they did not open for business for the fear of the gang robbers.

Some women who had gone with bags to the banks with plans to proceed to the market after the withdrawal, returned home with empty bags; those households have to endure for the day, forsake the Easter celebration.

Many are lamenting that it is unfortunate that   President Muhammadu Buhari have after declaring lockdown of the states, abandoned the citizens to the hazards of armed robbers, beside the negligence of providing palliatives.

In the Lagos/Ogun border communities of Sango, Otta, Ifo, Ishaga, Ajuwon, Ijoko, Agbado, Fagba, then moving inward to Obawole, gang robbery is carried out with impunity without Police interventions. Communities are beginning to mobilise for self-defence and protection.

The fear of the armed robbers is having spillover consequences of obstructing financial businesses.

The government coronavirus preventive measures are becoming more dangerous to the people than the virus itself. The risk of survival is getting higher. Hunger and insecurity are taking over threats to human race from the virus.

Meanwhile, shops remain shut, roads deserted while armed robbers take advantage of defenders’ citizens in most homes.