Mr John Simon, a beer distributor in Kano, has revealed that he lost N35million to recent destruction of alcoholic beverages by Hisbah (Sharia Police) in the state.
According to him, the destruction affected, individuals, companies and those who buy from distributors as they have been tamed like an animal in a zoo.
He also revealed that the prices of beer have risen and, obtaining the product to sell has become an uphill task, and this has reduced them to beggar.
Excerpts from the interview….
How has the destruction of alcoholic beverages by Hisbah affected your business?
We have all been affected, individually and collectively, directly or indirectly for those who buy from the companies and those who buy from distributors. We have bulk buyers, bulk breakers and the hoteliers.
We have been tamed like an animal in a zoo. First of all, the prices of beer have risen and, for now, obtaining the product to sell is an uphill task. So, we have been affected. It is a situation that has reduced us to beggars.
How was your consignment impounded?
When we ventured into the business, some few years ago, we were warned against transporting alcoholic drinks in open vehicles but in covered vehicles, which we complied with. We bring in the consignment with covered containers.
Despite the directive, Hisbah (Sharia police) kept interfering, particularly with Kano-bound trucks. We sought permission through our lawyer to be allowed to always transport our consignment via the federal highway, which we usually do. Despite using covered vehicles, we are no longer allowed thoroughfare in Kano. So, we need to come in as smugglers and when you encounter a breakdown on transit, you will be arrested.
What is the value of your goods that were destroyed?
I have lost over N35m and other various sums of money, all of which have gone down the drain.