On April 21, 2024, Abuja residents raised an outcry against a Chinese supermarket located within the China General Chamber of Commerce along Airport Road in Abuja. 

According to the eyewitnesses, the store refused to sell to Nigerians stating that only Chinese nationals could shop there. This claim was subsequently confirmed by a group of residents who went to the Asian supermarket and were also denied access by a security guard, who emphasized that he’d been given a “Chinese-only” directive.

What happened after this discovery?

Following this revelation, Nigerians took to social media to express their displeasure, calling the attention of the Federal Competition & Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) to the situation. 

On April 22, 2024, the commission sealed the supermarket after interrogating Nigerian workers in the establishment. The FCCPC, led by the Director for Surveillance and Investigation, Boladale Adeyinka, stated that to ensure consumer protection, the store would remain closed until the owner appeared before the commission tribunal for a lawful inquiry

What is the Chinese supermarket’s response?

The mart owner – Mrs Cindy Lui Bei – who had been caught on CCTV coverage fleeing the supermarket with her family around 8:26 am on Monday, April 22, released a statement on Tuesday, April 23, 2024, denying the allegations. She claimed that her store was a retail shop which was scheduled to downsize and eventually close up, further reiterating that the shop was in no way being discriminatory. Mrs Cindy Bei further stated that the situation was a miscommunication from the security guard as she had attended to two Nigerian customers the same day the mart was sealed. She also stated that she managed several Nigerian staff and was cordial with them. 

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