After a demolition in the massive informal market at Oshodi (the photo at the top of this blog illustrates the dynamism and pace of business there), one writer in the Lagos, Nigeria newspaper Business Day reveals the truth:
"Oshodi is also becoming the haven of elites. But Oshodi’s transformation right now is not turning in the direction of living quarters for elites as in the case of Maroko [a longstanding low income community on the Lekki peninsula that was illegally driven out to create more land for the rich] but a major elitist business hub."To qualify for a stall in the new 'elitist business hub,' a merchant has to pay 1.8 million Naira (approx. $12,000) for a 10 year lease, or, at least a 20 percent down payment plus 30,000 Naira a month (approx. $200) thereafter. Few of the prior merchants can afford that.
I understand cleaning up Oshodi, which can be cramped and dirty and threatening. But simply replacing one group of merchants with the elites, and using publicly sponsored demolitions to do it?