Currency hawkers identified as Toyin Alegbe, Kehinde Akinbode, Shoneye Latifat, Kehinde Olanrewaju and Iyanuoluwa Shokunbi, have been arrested by the Ogun State Police Command for allegedly hawking naira notes in different parts of the state .
Various denominations of naira notes totaling N1,560,000 were recovered from the currency hawkers who were arrested in Ijebu Ode, Sagamu and Abeokuta, during sting operations jointly carried out by the operatives of the command and officials of Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday 12th and Friday 13th of April 2018.
Punch reported that the state Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Iliyasu, directed the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the state Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Aminu Alhassan, to commence a full-scale investigation into the activities of the currency hawkers, who committed punishable offence, as contained in Section 21(1) of the CBN Act 2007 which made hawking, selling and abuse of naira a punishable offence.
The suspects, he said, would be charged to court soon. Iliyasu equally warned members of the public to desist from any act capable of soiling, or destroying the naira ‘which is one of the symbols of our national identity.
This is coming after seven persons who were hawking the mint naira notes in Onitsha were arrested by the Anambra State police command in collaboration with the Department of State Security, DSS, following complaint by officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN. The suspects, made up of six males and a female, were arrested at the drugs and building material’s markets in the city, where they were caught with over N4 million, most of which were mint.
Some other people doing the business fled when they sighted security agents and the police say they would soon be arrested. Since the raid at Onitsha, the hawkers had gone underground with the result that the commission has increased for those who still want to spray mint at ceremonies. For instance, rather than sell at the designated places, the hawkers have resorted to operating from their homes. One significant thing is that the business is still thriving even with the arrest of some dealers.