Following the spread of the Corona virus which recently started in China, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, (FCCPC) has shutdown Panda Supermarket in Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The FCCPC closed the supermarket located in Jabi, Abuja, on the morning of Wednesday, January 29, 2020, owing to confirmed allegations regarding illegal importation of seafood from China to the store. In a tweet on its official Twitter handle, the agency revealed that it had run an unscheduled spot check on Tuesday, January 28, 2019, on a food store concealed within Panda Supermarket to investigate and confirm if the allegations against the Chinese store were true.
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After thorough inspection of the store by the FCCPC on Tuesday, the supermarket was closed down. Panda Supermarket, which is located in the Jabi District axis of Abuja, the Federal capital city of Nigeria, is one of its retail stores in Nigeria’s capital city and stock goods like wines, drinks, seafood, pastries, baby products, and more. On Wednesday, the commission alleged that it had discovered seafood and animals that were imported illegally from China in the retail store. Going further, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission noted that expired products and irregular shelf life were sold at the store.
Also, the inspection of the supermarket was equally motivated by allegations of discrimination which alleged that the store had a concealed area reserved exclusively for Asian nationals, something the FCCPC did not take likely. It is quite obnoxious to know that a certain area in the Federal Republic of Nigeria is reserved for Asian nationals, something the accommodative Nigerian spirit could not permit. After finding out that the allegations were true, the Nigerian government did not hesitate to shutdown what could be of serious threat to Nigerian lives, to take early precaution on the basis of national interest.
The measure taken by the FCCPC is in line with actions of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s government to ensure the deadly corona virus does not hit Nigeria. Corona which is prevalent in China, equally affects animals. Little wonder, the illegal importation of animals from China is of great concern. Whether viewed from the perspective of illegal importation or threat of the corona virus, the Panda Supermarket is guilty from all angles and deserved to be locked down.
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So far, the virus has killed a total of 213 people, leaving more than 6,000 people infected in China. Corona cases have equally been recorded in countries like the United States, Germany, Japan, and France. Owing to the increase in the outbreak of the disease, countries all over the globe have been making plans to repatriate their citizens in China. Wuhan province in China has recorded more deaths from the virus so far, and 9,692 people confirmed to be infected with the virus globally. An unnamed Ivorian student has reportedly contacted the virus. The student who returned from Beijing, China where she has been studying has since been quarantined by the Ivorian government.
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