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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Abuja’s Chinese supermarket where Nigerians aren’t allowed to enter!

The management of an Abuja-based Chinese supermarket has come under fire for denying Nigerians entry into the facility.

Our correspondent reports that entry into the supermarket is restricted exclusively to individuals of Chinese descent.

The supermarket situated at the China General Chamber of Commerce, along Umaru Musa Yar’Adua Road in the Federal Capital Territory, is acclaimed as a destination for Chinese cuisine and beverages.

A video posted by X Daily showed an unidentified FCT resident expressing discontent about the discriminatory policy .

The resident said, “Wonders shall never end. There is a supermarket I saw online that is a Chinese supermarket. They have Chinese food, ramen and other things. I wanted to go there and check it out but I was denied entry. The security officers at the gate said the supermarket was strictly for Chinese people and no Nigerian is allowed to go inside or buy anything. Is that possible in China?

“This supermarket is here in Abuja and a Nigerian cannot enter. This is a joke. So that means a Chinese guy has more rights than you here in Nigeria. Chinese guys are allowed to visit anywhere in the country. The thing shocked me oo. Now I am going back to our local supermarket because they said I cannot enter.”

Uncle Deji @DejiAdesogan also wrote on X, “So there’s a Chinese supermarket in Abuja that Nigerians cannot enter, let alone buy anything, that only Chinese are allowed? So weird to believe.”

Another X user, Otunba AbdulFattah @OyedeleFatai, corroborating the claim, said he was denied entrance twice this year.

“Yes! China Chambers of Commerce along airport road. I was denied access twice this year. The security told me that they have stopped Nigerians from entering the premises since January 2024. Nonsense! @NafdacAgency @fccpcnigeria,” he wrote.

He added, “Interesting. We hope Oga @YusufTuggar will attend to your issue raised.”

A review by Whitney Ukanga on the chamber’s Google page read, “The Chinese have gradually seeped their nasty tentacles onto Nigeria. Nigerians have been forbidden to get into the supermarket in the China Chamber of Commerce but every other nationality may enter. In our own country. This is absolutely horrible and absurd.”

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When our correspondent visited the supermarket to confirm the authenticity of the claim on Sunday, security personnel at the gate confirmed that the management of the chamber gave the directive at the beginning of the year without giving reasons.

One of the officers who didn’t wear his name tag and declined to disclose his name, said prospective shoppers who are not Chinese are turned back at the gate as directed by the management.

The officer said, “For now, they (management) have stopped everything. The truth is that they are selling but they said our people should stop coming. They said only Chinese individuals are allowed to shop here. The shop is only meant for Chinese people. People were allowed to come in throughout last year but since January, they changed the policy and directed that no Nigerian is allowed to enter.

“We were not informed of any reason for the policy but we have told them to remove all adverts from the internet so that people would stop coming.”

Our correspondent was however allowed entrance because, according to the officer, “Today is Sunday and you are covered with grace.”

At the grocery store located at Villa 7, a mixture of foreign and local food, drinks and essential items was showcased on the shelf with no price tag.

One of the attendants, who speaks Yoruba Language, expressed shock that a Nigerian was allowed to gain entry, noting that “maybe they allowed because you didn’t come with a car.”

She also stated that authorities stopped Nigerians from entering for reasons not known to them.

She noted, “Yes, Nigerians are not allowed to enter the supermarket. Only people who work on the premises are allowed to shop here. There are reasons but we don’t know because it was not like this before. I don’t how they allowed you in, maybe because you didn’t come with a car. They would never allow anyone who comes with a car to enter the premises.”

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When our correspondent asked for the contact of the general manager to get official explanations, both security officers and staff refused to give it out for fear of reprimand and loss of job.

But an official number obtained from the Google page of the chamber, identified by True caller as Yemi Oke, Agrolink Consultants Limited, was not reachable.

On his part, the Senior Public Relations Officer, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, Nicholas Utsalo, refrained from offering comment, citing protocol that only allows the Executive Vice Chairman to address the press.

Instead, he requested access to the video footage and assured the public that an investigation into the allegations would be conducted.

Source: The PUNCH

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