Few months after the State House of Assembly in Lagos, South West Nigeria, reopened clubs where young girls danced stark naked to the delight of teeming patrons, the business has started booming again with more Lagosians paying to watch the girls dance.
On Opebi-Allen axis of Ikeja alone, all the four strip clubs that were shut down on 3 November 2009 have returned to business in full force with more girls dancing to a larger audience of men and women.
The four nude clubs are Wallstreet, Club Unique, Magic City and Cazzbah. Wallstreet is located at 70B Allen Avenue while Club Unique is on Ogundana Street off Allen Avenue. Solid Gold formerly Ocean Blue, is adjacent to Sweet Sensation Bus Stop on Opebi and Cazzbah is adjacent to Opebi Bus Stop.
Club Unique has even gone a step further by publishing a magazine called Unique Babes, in which the female dancersâ€™ lewd photographs are lavishly displayed. A copy costs N1,500.
The clubs were earlier closed by the Lagos State Task Force for operating strip clubs in residential areas without permit. Two managers and 33 dancers were arrested and paraded. But since the girls were rehired early this year after the state lawmakers said that there was nothing illegal about the business, it has become business as usual with even more rewards for the girls.
P.M.NEWS checks at the clubs in recent days have revealed that although open sex has been stopped, the other perks have remained in place in some of the clubs. At Magic City last week Thursday and Friday, the hall was filled to the brim as the girls displayed all they could. Two girls entertained the crowd by sucking each otherâ€™s breasts to a rousing applause from male and female patrons watching them.
The girls were mostly different from those who danced there last year before the closure. About a dozen belly dancers walk around the clubs asking patrons if they needed lap dance.
One of the girls called Angel who claimed to be staying in Egbeda told our reporter that she is a part time student in Lagos but did not disclose the name of her institution. She said money is the reason she is dancing.
Just like before the closure, the daily show usually starts at about 8 Oâ€™clock and gets to its crescendo around 11 p.m. when the hall is filled to the brim. The belly dancers cover their bodies with only panties and gradually undress as they dance around a pole but they no longer remove their panties.
The patrons show appreciation by throwing money at the dancers.
The halls are generally filled with men and some ladies who come either with other men or with fellow ladies to enjoy the show. A patron can request for a lap dance and pay only N1000. The exotic dancer then sits on his lap, touches him and dances with the ultimate motive of creating arousal.
There are also cabins and VIP rooms where a patron can decide to go a step further with the girl. It costs between N12, 000 and N20, 000 with the dancer collecting 60 percent of the money and 40 percent going to the management.
A cabin at Wallstreet is a very small room with one chair where the patron sits and the VIP has a large bed, a TV set, a toilet and some condoms. At the VIP room and cabin, phone numbers can be exchanged for further interactions. The exotic dancers are usually between the ages of 18 and 25.
Usually tall and light in complexion, they give only their sobriquets. They easily take other ladies to the cabin or the VIP if they can pay. It is the same price for both men and women. The girls resume work at 6 p.m. They are free to go wherever they want between 7 am and 6 pm.
The drinks and hot meals usually available and most times, go for between N500 and N10, 000 for the drinks and N1500 to N5000 for the meals. Here, the ladies dance to all kinds of musical rhythms.
At Solid Gold and Wallstreet, adult movies are shown on screens while the ladies are dancing. The show usually ends at about 5 Oâ€™clock the next day.
At Club Unique, located in Ogundana Street, Allen Avenue, Ikeja, patronage has improved tremendously, and some of the patrons that spoke with our reporter said it was indeed a welcome development that the clubs have been re-opened.
Unique, as the club is fondly called, has however been operating like a normal night club. The ladies no longer strip, and according to a manger in the club, the move is in line with the resolution of the Lagos State House of Assembly.
The House, while ordering the clubs to be re-opened had stated that pending the time that the strip clubs will be regulated, the dancers should desist from stripping, but said they can continue dancing with bikinis.
P.M NEWS gathered that since the clubs were re-opened, more Lagosians now have the confidence of patronizing them, knowing full well that they have the backing of the law.
Speaking with P.M NEWS, a patron said :â€I have not been to any of these strip clubs before, and that was because I never knew if they operate legally or not. But ever since I knew that it is a legal business after all, I have been coming around.
â€œThe way I see things around here [Club Unique], it is a gentlemanâ€™s hang-out, and I see no reason why the Task Force people will clampdown on them in the first place. The dancers are not under-aged and even minors are not allowed to come in, so itâ€™s a good relaxation spot.â€
â€”Bayo Adetu & Simon Ateba