How I Escaped the Third Robbery Attack – Point of Sale Operator

Aza Ngusha Israel is a 21-year-old Point of Sale (POS) Operator from Nasarawa State. He started the business to raise funds to further his education after earning a National Diploma in Accountancy from Isa Mustapha Agwai Polytechnic, Lafia.

His decision to start a point-of-sale business had led to several death threats, including being robbed twice. Ngusha is one of the outlet operators in Lafia that the thieves had turned into a cash cow due to their vulnerability.

Point of sale is a booming business in many Nigerian communities. The small number of automatic teller machines (ATMs) encourages the use of the system for financial transactions.

These operators are easy targets for thieves and thugs who take advantage of the money in their possession.

Israel said the attacks repeatedly caused it to reconsider its decision to set up the company. He said the hardships and his future plans would have been aborted had he left the company; he therefore had to stay with the company despite the threats.

He said that when he started his outlet business, suspected armed robbers invaded his business center and took away the sum of 30,000 Naira. He said that after the first attack he thought the thugs would not return, but he was wrong, noting that a month later they resurfaced, attacked him and collected a total amount of N20,000 at gunpoint.

“The outlet operators in Nasarawa State are not safe. Our lives are always in danger. These are the challenges we faced. Thieves and thugs do not always allow us to operate peacefully. I want to believe that the high unemployment rate across the country is responsible for this unholy act,” he lamented.

He said that due to the high crime rate against outlet operators, he had to readjust his opening hours. “When I started this business, I closed for the day between 8 and 10 p.m., but now I can’t stay past 6 p.m. because of the nefarious activities of armed robbers and thugs.”

Highlighting why he continued the business despite the dangers, he said: “I am in this business to enable me to continue my education. If it wasn’t for my uncle, I wouldn’t have gone to school to get my national diploma in accountancy. I lost my father very early, but my mother is still alive. We are four and I am the third born.

“It was the lack of funds that prevented me from starting my BTS after graduating in 2020. It is from this small business that I take care of my youngest, including my mother.

“I was motivated to start the POS business in November 2021 with the help of my uncle because I was sitting idle at home after my ND program. I didn’t want to leave the burden to my uncle, who also takes care of his immediate family.

He called on the state government to address the issue of insecurity in the state.

Israel further said that some of the robbers used charms and firearms to threaten him. He said the early hours of closing did not help him either as he was attacked last Tuesday.

“I was attacked by armed robbers around 6 p.m. It was God who saved my life, with the help of security personnel around Ombi 1, otherwise I would have been killed,” he said.

He said thugs attacked him at gunpoint at 6 p.m. last Tuesday in Ombi Zone 1 of Lafia Local Government Area after it closed for the day.

Daily Trust Saturday had reported that police officers from Nasarawa State Command had arrested a bogus naval officer, fraudster and notorious criminal identified as Nasiru Ahmed in Karu local government area.

Command spokesman, DSP Ramhan Nansel, while parading the suspect recently in Lafia, said he was usually dressed in full Nigerian Navy military camouflage and had approached outlet operators at different Karu’s locations, under the guise of carrying out transactions, during which he would send fake bank alerts to his victims’ cellphones.

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