Tag Archives: market

COVID-19: Churches, Markets, Mosques to remain shut – Ortom back FG.


Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has stated that markets, religious worship centers in the state have to remain closed to contain the spread of covid-19.

The governor had earlier ordered churches and mosques in the state, closed due to the pandemic, said they should reopen.

He also ordered for the reopening of markets.

However, during the weekly news briefing on activities of the Covid -19 Quick Response Team in the state on Saturday, the governor rescinded his earlier orders.

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On why he did, he said it was due to the apprehension expressed by the Federal Government over decisions by some state governments to reopen religious activities.

The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 had on Thursday warned the state governors against lifting bans on worship centres and other gatherings.

It insisted that the directive of the Federal Government against the gathering of more than 20 persons was still be in effect.

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Ortom said Benue as a state that remained a component of the Federal Government, could not go ahead with a decisions that goes against the expressed standing of the Federal Government.

According to him, the Federal Government, as the custodian of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), had all the needed information on the viral infection and how to contain its spread.

The governor pleaded with the residents of the state to bear with the state government over the withdrawal of the earlier order.

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He said, “You need to be alive before you can worship.”

The governor added that he had consulted with relevant stakeholders including leaders of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and Jamatu Nasiru Islam on the matter.


#Newsworthy…

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COVID-19: Markets can’t be open while churches are closed – Oyedepo kicks. [Nigeria]

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Bishop David Oyedepo of Living Faith Church Worldwide has criticized the continued closure of churches due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Federal Government ordered against social gathering a to help curb the spread of coronavirus which now has over 2000 confirmed cases in Nigeria.

The decision affects churches and mosques which can contain over 50 people gathered for service.

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“There is something wrong, for people to be allowed to be in the market for six hours and cannot be in church for two hours, it is an upside down way for looking at things.
Which one is more orderly? The market or the church?

“I can smell a rat. The Lord spoke to me on it strongly on it yesterday. I can smell a rat behind all this. It is how do we stop the church from exploding.

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“The voice of darkness are influencing people at various levels targeting the church because the growth and expansion of the church is the greatest headache of the devil. But the gates of hell shall not prevail.
The devil and his agents shall surely pay for this.

“I don’t know what hospital that records the kind of healings that the church of God records. And now hospitals where people die everyday is open but the church is closed.” the Bishop stated.


#Newsworthy…

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Nigerian Govt Squeezes Market Hours, Days Amid Lockdown Ease.

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Governor Bala Mohammad of Bauchi State, on Friday approved the extension of business hours for markets to operate every Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday from 6 am to 6 pm from May 2.

Mohammed, in a statement signed by Mr. Muktar Gidado, his Senior Special Assistant (SSA) on Media, said that officials of the Enforcement Committee would monitor compliance to ensure social distancing to curtail the spread of the virus in the State.

“Following the report of panic buying and overcrowding in our major markets across the State as a result of the partial lockdown enforced on markets.

“His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Bauchi state, Bala Mohammed (Kauran Bauchi) has graciously approved the extension of time of operation in the markets.

“Based on the new order, markets will continue to operate every Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday from 6 am to 6 pm from May 2.

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“The public, in particular, traders, market unions and associations should take note of the change as officials of the enforcement Committee will monitor compliance to ensure social distancing to curtail the spread of the virus,” he said.

Recall that in the earlier announcement of the partial lockdown on April 23, the State government ordered that markets would operate on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from 10 am to 2 pm from April 26.


#Newsworthy…

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Burkina reopen main market in it’s capital after COVID-19 threat lift.


It was back to the business at the sprawling central market of Ouagadougou, capital of Burkina Faso, on Monday after a closure of nearly a month in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s a joy to see the market reopen its doors,” said fabric dealer Boureima Compaore. “The situation was getting difficult for us.”

As of Sunday, the poor West African country had reported 36 deaths from among 576 cases of COVID-19.

Around 40 other markets were closed in the city of three million on March 25, two weeks after the first appearance of the virus in the country.

“It’s been a real hardship since the closure,” said Souleymane Sawadogo, a clothing vendor. “Now we’re relieved. We also hope customers won’t be afraid to come and buy.” He vowed that merchants would adhere strictly to “the most rigorous measures to keep the market open”.

The bustling market offering produces, meats and spices, as well as all manner of textiles, hardware, appliances, computer accessories, motorcycle spare parts and even artworks, operates every day from dawn to dusk.
Between 25,000 and 30,000 people staff the two-storey market’s nearly 3,000 stalls, according to the city’s Urban Development Agency.

“The main market is the capital’s economic lung,” said Salifou Kabore, the president of the National Council of the Informal Sector, noting that it supplies many of the country’s other markets.

  • Behaviour changes –
    The pandemic has hit an economy already challenged by a five-year-old battle against jihadist groups. The government is now targeting growth of 2.0 percent compared with an earlier projection of 6.3 percent.

The country’s borders are closed and big cities including Ouagadougou are under quarantine.

Before the reopening, the main Ouagadougou market was totally hosed down and disinfected, as were other markets around the country, Trade Minister Harouna Kabore said. Loudspeakers repeat messages to the public on measures to help prevent contamination.

Shoppers must disinfect their hands and have their temperature taken when entering the market, Mayor Armand Beouinde said, adding that the floor was marked to enforce social distancing.

Police and nearly 500 volunteers will be deployed to encourage public awareness and respect for anti-corona measures, he said.

Vendors and customers alike will be required to wear masks and no more than two customers will be allowed at a time at any stall, according to Halidou Sanfo, who represents vendors.

“We are all called upon to change our behaviour. We can’t go to the market as we did before, and we will make sure of that,” he said.

Some passers-by expressed doubt over the reopening.

“The disease has yet to be overcome,” said secondary school teacher Awa Zoungrana. “The cases are only increasing.”

Retired civil servant Albert Nana said he planned to avoid the market, for the time being, questioning the rush to resume trading. “The authorities have no doubt reopened the market to prevent unrest.”


#Newsworthy…

No daily income, we are suffering – Nigerian traders cries.


Lockdown occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic is disrupting economy at different scales across the globe with several income-yielding activities being at their lowest ebb. While big firms have devised some models like allowing their workers to work from home to cushion the effect of the shutdown, hundreds of small businesses have been brought to a standstill, leaving the operators in lack.

The President, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), ordered a 14-day movement restriction in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, to curb the spread of coronavirus.

A food vendor at Ogba, Lagos, Mrs Kudirat Adebisi, reflects the dark side of this trying time. The 42-year-old woman has been enduring strenuous means to feed her family since March 31 as the Federal Government’s lockdown order took effect in the state.

The little profit she realises from her daily sales is what she, her three children and visually-impaired husband, have been living on in the last four years. She is the pillar the family leans on and never shies away from the burden that comes with it. But the challenge has become weighty since she suspended her business about two weeks ago due to the distance from her home in the Abule Egba area of the state to the shop.

“I sell rice and have to go to market every day to buy ingredients. Since commercial buses are not allowed to operate, it is difficult for me to go to shop even though government allows food vendors and those on essential services to operate,” she stated in Yoruba.

Having to stay at home with a husband and three children to cater for portends a serious financial distress for Adebisi. The family has been feeding on her small capital and she couldn’t wait for the lockdown to end so she could reinvest the remainder of the money to keep the family running.

“The money I use for my food business is not up to N20,000. The little gain I make daily is what my family and I survive on,” she disclosed.

“My husband cannot work because of his condition so I shoulder all the responsibilities. We have been spending from the capital with little support from generous neighbours. I didn’t get any relief food item from government as promised,” the woman added.

Adebisi’s plight typifies what many Nigerians whose survival hinges on daily income have been going through amid the lockdown caused by COVID-19 which has killed 10 persons and sickened 318 people in the country as of Saturday.

Like Adebisi, Mrs Bimpe Isaac, a food seller on Sule Abore Street, Ojodu, has been confined to her residence in Alagbole (a neigbouring community in Ogun State) in recent days. She has been a strong support base for her electrician husband to ensure they put food on the table for themselves and their four kids.

But the lockdown has practically mounted more pressure on the couple while trying to fend for the family these days, Isaac said during the week.

She said, “I came to sell food on the second day of the lockdown, but the turnover was not encouraging. I sold to more customers on credit. When I considered the stress I went through to get a vehicle to the shop and back home, I decided to stop.

“My husband is an electrician and many customers need his service, but their places are far. It is what he realises from the work he does within the community and my little contribution that we manage to prepare food. It has not been easy. I pray this disease is brought under control so we can continue with our normal life.”


Hawkers, commercial drivers relying on help, savings


Starting out as an outbreak late December 2019 in Wuhan, a suburb of China, coronavirus has steadily snowballed into a pandemic sweeping through the world without a specific vaccine in sight.

With over 103,000 deaths and more than 1.7 million cases as of Saturday, the virus continues to impact negatively on almost all spheres of life – sports, stock exchange, banking sector, aviation, among other national and international trades.

Already, global economy is seriously bleeding and heading towards recession. Nigeria’s ailing economy may also face harsh realities of recession in six months, according to the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed.

Meanwhile, Nigeria and other countries of the world have come up with different strategies, including lockdown and social distancing rules to arrest the spread of the disease and tackle it to fully restore the economy.

But while the lockdown measure lasts, Uzor Tochukwu, who hawks accessories in traffic around Ojota – a fairly bustling area at the heart of Lagos – is stuck without any means of making ends meet.

Every day, Tochukwu’s sustenance is hinged on traffic snaking in the bubbling Lagos centre. He sells car chargers, earphones and phone hangers to eke out a living.

A secondary school leaver, the indigene of Anambra State collects the items from a relative who has a shop at Computer Village, Ikeja, and remits payment every three days, using the gains from daily sales to keep body and soul together.

Within three days into the lockdown, the 23-year-old began to depend on the benevolence of relations and neighbours after exhausting his savings without any means of replenishing it – at least for now.

He stated, “I have never found myself in this kind of situation for some years now. There is nothing I can sell when there are fewer vehicles on the road and there is no traffic where I normally stay. How do I even get to Ojota from Alapere where I live when there is no bus?

“I can’t imagine what life would be without support from relatives and neighbours because my parents are not in Lagos.”

A roving newspaper seller on Ogunnusi Road, Ojodu-Berger, Toyin Kolawole, is also temporarily out of business due to the lockdown. The 41-year-old man depends on the busy morning traffic along the corridor to sell papers every day. But unlike other stationary newspaper vendors who still make sales from buyers who trek from their homes to the stands, he hardly sees people to sell to while roving.

“Once I don’t sell papers in a day, I have no other means of income. The majority of my customers are the motorists who ply this road. So there is no point carrying papers around when the road is deserted,” he revealed. “My little saving is what I have been managing to survive all this while,” Kolawole added.

Bayo, as he simply identified himself, shuttles between Ketu and Ikorodu with his 10-passenger yellow bus (popularly known as Danfo) on a daily basis to provide food for his family of four.

Painfully, the past few days have proved really hard for the family whose means of livelihood has been held in the lockdown. He told our correspondent that he borrows money from friends to ensure the family does not go hungry.

As part of the tactics to get through the trying moment, Bayo said he and his wife now take only brunch and dinner.

“I had spent the N10,000 I had before the lockdown started and had to borrow another N10, 000 to survive this period. My friends who are commercial drivers are going through the same challenge. I have three children and a wife, who has a hairdressing shop along Ikorodu Road. Both of us can’t go to work.

“We have been rationing our food items pending when the lockdown will end. We make sure our children eat three times daily while we take breakfast and dinner. We take our breakfast around 11am so it can cover for lunch,” he lamented.


Some street traders defying the odds


However, some food items sellers have defied the odds caused by the lockdown to earn a living. A pepper seller at a market on Obafalabi Street, Ojodu, Mrs Zainab Ibrahim, said that she has been trekking to Mile 12 every three days to restock her wares since the lockdown started.

She said, “I am a single mother with two children. Is it the government that will feed them if I don’t work? Since those of us selling food items are exempted from the lockdown, I have to take the pain for the sake of my children.

“When I came back from Mile 12 on Tuesday, I had to massage my legs with a balm because it was seriously aching. I trekked the distance to and fro. There was no commercial bus to board. The consolation I have is that I sell the pepper quickly and make my gains.”

Our correspondent also saw two middle-aged women trudging along a deserted road in Ogba area around 11.30am on Thursday carrying large quantities of vegetables wrapped with cloths.

One of them who agreed to speak briefly, lamented that the trekking had become a routine for her since the lockdown began in the state.

The woman, who identified herself only as Mama Kemi, said she left her residence in Aguda, Ogba area, around 5am for Ketu, where she bought the vegetables.

The about 15-kilometer walk is a huge sacrifice the mother of four has to make to ensure the family survive the harrowing period.

“I am a widow with four children. It is my responsibility to cater to them and I have no other means apart from selling vegetables,” she muttered, panting for breath as a result of exhaustion. “This is the third time I will go to Ketu since this thing (lockdown) started,” she added.

Speaking on the development, the National President, Association of Small Business Owners of Nigeria, Dr. Femi Egbesola, in a telephone interview with our correspondent emphasised the reality that global and local economies were crashing due to the pandemic.

He, however, noted that nothing meaningful had been seen of palliatives promised to households and businesses by the Nigerian government at all levels.

Egbesola said the process of accessing the N50bn intervention funds earmarked by the Central Bank of Nigeria for businesses affected by COVID-19 was slow, adding that many business owners had applied but had yet to move beyond the application stage.

He said, “First, planning a food stimulus for 200,000 in Lagos that has a population of over 20 million people is indeed a child’s play. Little wonder then why there are outcries in Lagos about a whole community of over 200 households receiving just two packs of the stimulus food package. I guess this indeed implies that the exercise is a failure.

“We look forward to the point of some businesses getting the fund as promised. We believe this is the best time to release the fund especially to the critical sectors like food processing companies, agric sector and its value chain, health sector, pharmaceuticals, basic needs etc as these industries need to continue operations if we must survive the pandemic.

“This CBN intervention fund, no doubt, is a novel idea by government. But come to think of it, what will N50bn actually do in a population of a country with about 42 million MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises)? That no doubt is also indeed a drop in the ocean. More importantly, the criteria for accessing it are far and beyond the reach of the micro and small business owners who form the bulk of operators of businesses in Nigeria.”

Egbesola urged the government to make the palliative disbursement processes transparent enough to convince the affected business owners, noting that it should be accessible to those at the bottom of the pyramid.

He added, “If nothing urgent is done, the effect of this pandemic without the right, workable and result-oriented palliatives, will result in closure of many micro and small businesses, colossal loss of jobs, increase in crime rate, untold inflation, apathy of the citizenry towards government and its policies, loss of revenue for government (as it is healthy business that can pay tax), hunger, poverty and much more. This may eventually lead to recession. If this happens, it will spell doom for the country and her inhabitants.”


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Men full Onitsha market, attack traders who increase prices of food items. (Nigeria)


A group of irate men in Onitsha, Anambra State reportedly went into town today to attack traders who increased prices of food items.

According to reports, a female trader was used as an example for other traders as a big bowl of her garri was thrown away by the said men who were not happy that she hiked the price of her goods with over a 100% increment from N500 to N1500.


A Facebook user identified as Jestymoore Nnokwa who shared the story wrote;

“Today In onitsha, igbo boys went into town to see those wicked and cruel market women selling food items at exorbitant prices, unfortunately for this Garri seller, she was selling Garri of N500 for N1500 and the boys threw everything away on the ground. They were upset with what they saw in the market today in onitsha market.


#Newsworthy…

Update: Cause of fire outbreak in Balogun market – SSA reveals ..


The cause of the fire outbreak at the popular Balogun market in Lagos state has been revealed.

Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the Lagos State Governor on New Media, Jubril Gawat, revealed that the fire started after someone, possibly a trader, attempted to refuel his generator while it was on. An explosion ensued and the fire immediately started spreading.

Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, spokesman, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, said a total of seven buildings were affected while two of the affected buildings has collapsed.

“This fire has escalated to adjoining buildings totaling seven (7) in number and now is being contained by the Emergency responders-Lagos State Fire Service and the Federal Fire Service and NPA Fire Service. Seven buildings are affected and one has collapsed.

All responders are on ground and progress is being made. We urge for calm and will provide further updates,” said Oke-Osanyintolu, LASEMA’s Director General.

Men of the state fire service are still at the scene trying to put out the fire.


#Newsworthy…

Shocker: Sabo market on fire ..


Sabo Market in Sagamu, Ogun State, is currently on fire.

An eyewitness told SaharaReporters that the fire started around 3:00am.

Details later…


#Newsworthy…

Mushin market: Fire Outbreak, Properties destroyed


Properties worth billions of naira were on Saturday destroyed in a fire outbreak which gutted the building materials sections of Amu market in Mushin, Lagos State.

According to an eyewitness, the fire started from one of the several lines of shops within the market in the early hours of the day.


The actual cause of the inferno, which the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) currently battling with, could not be ascertained at press time, as there was no power supply within the market.

Fire guts Amu market in Mushin, goods worth billions destroyed


LASEMA confronts Mushin timber market fire in Lagos
The eyewitness said that the fire started around 12:27 am from a spot in the market and spread to other buildings and other shops before LASEMA team came to the market.

He said: “As at the time the fire started, that was no power supply. So it is difficult to say what actually caused the fire outbreak. Almost 90 per cent of the building materials have been destroyed but no life was lost.”

When Daily Sun visited the scene early in the morning of Saturday, the LASEMA team was on hand to put out the fire, while other unaffected marketers were trying to evacuate their goods for safety.

As at the time of filing this report, all efforts to speak to market leaders proved abortive, as there was confusion within the market.


#Newsworthy…

Osun to build specialised agricultural & fish market – commissioner


Osun State Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr Adedayo Adewole has disclosed that the Federal Government plans to build a specialised agricultural produce and international fish market in Ijebu –Jesa in Oriade Local Government Area of Osun.

Adewole, made this known at a meeting of the Project Implementation Committee(PIC) in Osogbo.

He said the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment, in conjunction with Agricultural Traders Welfare Association (ATWA), would be executing the project in the state.


According to him, the project is a fallout of the economic and investment summit organised by the state government in November 2019 and targeted at boosting the economy of the state.

He said apart from the fact that the project upon implementation would boost the economy of Osun, it would also boost the business of fish farmers and marketers in the state and its environs .


Earlier, the representative of the PIC, Dr Joseph Okeke, thanked the state government for promoting discussion of the economic transformation of the state and Nigeria in general through agriculture and agricultural value chain.

Okeke, who also doubles as the National President of ATWA, further said that the project was targeted toward economic diversification by the Federal Government in the area of specialised agricultural market.

According to him, it is also geared toward job creation, enhancing economic activities and facilitating exportation of Nigerian commodities.

The committee, comprising of the project facilitator, Dr Gabriel Eniola, Osun Fish Farmers Association Chairman, Mr Tope Ogundipe and Osun Commissioner for Lands and Physical Planning, Mr Nathaniel Agunbiade among others later inspected the site.


#Newsworthy…

Check out N2m gold chain speed darlington bragged he bought from yaba market, Lagos


Speed Darlington has claimed he bought a set of gold chain in Yaba market, Lagos, for a whooping sum of two million naira.

In a video he posted showing off the chains, the singer said he had to purchase the items in Nigeria to support the economy, and not ”just blessing call girls” since his return home.

Speed Darlington shows off

Video


#Newsworthy…

Akesan Fire Disaster: 3 Feared Dead

…over 1,000 shops destroyed in the inferno


Three persons are feared dead in Oyo town on Sunday as fire razed more than 1,000 shops in the popular Akesan Market and destroyed property and goods worth millions of naira.

The market is the main commercial centre of the town that houses the palace of the Alaafin of Oyo. All the shops in the market were destroyed by the inferno. NobleReporters learnt


3 feared dead as fire razes over 1,000 shops at Akesan Market in Oyo town

Three people among protesters at the office of fire brigades in the vicinity of the market over failure of the fire service to contain the fire were allegedly shot dead by the police. The office of the fire service, according to sources, is about 20 metres to the market.


Sources stated that firefighters were helpless when the fire outbreak occurred as their fire fighting equipment did not function. But fire brigades were mobilised from Ibadan and Ogomoso, the state capital, arriving the scene with functioning equipment after substantial havoc had already been wrecked.

A source from the secretariat of the state fire service in Ibadan confirmed that the fire service office in Oyo town has been vandalised by the aggrieved residents, while men of the Nigerian Army and their counterparts from the Nigeria Police Force have been mobilised to the area.


But the Police Public Relations Officer for Oyo State Command, Mr Olugbenga Fadeyi, has said police did not kill anybody as being speculated, saying: “Contrary to widely spread news on the fire incident at Akesan Market in Oyo town, there was no single shot from the Police personnel in Oyo.

“Police personnel were deployed immediately to the scene to prevent hoodlums from capitalising on the situation to loot shops and property in the area. Concerted efforts are being intensified to prevent the breakdown of law and order.”


Those who have shops in the market were said to have rushed to the scene, but the fire was of such intensity that they could not move close enough to their shops to salvage anything from the market.

The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III, has visited the market, during which he appealed to traders and people of the town to remain calm. The monarch, who expressed sadness over the incident, said the damage was too huge for the people to bear. He noted that such a fire disaster was unprecedented in Oyo town.


Secretary, Oyo Global Forum, Taiwo Adebayo, in his reaction to the inferno, said: “We condemn this failure of government service. But of more concern is the disproportionate use of force in response to angry residents who were protesting at the gate of the fire service near Akesan in Oyo. We sympathise with our people, particularly men and women trading at Akesan. It is a sad way to start the year.

“In due course, we will be demanding that Oyo State Government should compensate the traders and rebuild the market, while also enforcing stricter safety standards across the state. We will also not allow the police to get away with the killings in Oyo.”


Meanwhile, the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Sunday Dare, has expressed sadness over the devastating fire that gutted the ancient Akesan Market.

In a tweet, the Minister wrote, “The news of the inferno that destroyed the popular Akesan Ancient market in Oyo just got to me. I am deeply saddened by this disaster so early in the year and extend my condolences to all those affected. I will visit shortly and work with the state government to bring relief.”


While sending condolences and sharing in their loss, Dare stated that the importance and purpose of Akesan Market as a major market with a huge economic impact in Oyo State and Nigeria at large cannot be overemphasised, describing the fire as a great disaster.

Also, Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Kehinde Aderemi, consoled with Oba Adeyemi over the early morning inferno that razed the Akesan market, describing the incident as disastrous.

“I received with great shock the news of the early morning fire outbreak that had wreaked great havoc on the ancient market in Yorubaland. As much as I share in the grief with our father, the Alaafin of Oyo, and all sons and daughters of the town, I pray that this kind of unfortunate incident will never happen again.

“Akesan Market is the central and major market in Oyo with a rich history. Oyo has never witnessed this monumental loss, because the market is our heritage and it is part of what makes Oyo town the centre of culture and tradition. I know the Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, will respond to the incident, by doing a thorough investigation in order to unravel the causes of the mystery behind the midnight inferno.”


#Newsworthy…

Fire Outbreak in Enugu Ogbete Market.


A section of the popular Ogbete market in Enugu state was gutted by fire today Friday January 3rd. The cause of fire is yet to be ascertained.

Men of the state fire service were there to help put out the fire.

See more photos below

Fire guts Ogbete main market Enugu  (photos)

Fire guts Ogbete main market Enugu  (photos)

Fire guts Ogbete main market Enugu  (photos)
Fire guts Ogbete main market Enugu  (photos)
Fire guts Ogbete main market Enugu  (photos)


#Newsworthy…

Lagos: Kara market on fire


A section of the popular cattle market also known as Kara, close to the Berger Garage on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway was gutted by fire yesterday morning.

Newsmen, who visited the market, gathered from witnesses that about 40 shops, five storage facilities, 20 residential rooms and cash, all worth millions of naira were lost to the inferno.


They added that the goods in the shops and storage facilities include provisions, animal feeds and food items.

Some of the operators at the market speaking to newsmen thanked God that no life was lost from what they described as a ‘mysterious’ fire.


The sellers, in separate interviews, told newsmen that they were grateful that no one died in the incident which burnt many shops and three vehicles.

Secretary of the sellers in the market, said some of his members had removed their wares from their shops before the raging fire became uncontrollable.


Ajeweje, however, said nobody could ascertain how the fire started.

“The incident did not affect any life; by the time the fire had spread, some people had already removed their property.


“It affected some shops and some living apartments there. Personally, I don’t have an idea of what caused it, we heard that some people just saw the fire around the area where rams are sold,” he said.

Akeweje commended the timely response of the Lagos State Fire Service, which helped to put out the fire.


“We were called at about 11a.m. that part of our area at Kara was burning. Before we got there, they had stopped the fire from spreading to other areas.

“The fire fighters from Alausa really tried,” he said.


Also, Tanko Abdullahi, a ram seller, whose stall was not far from the incident, said he was grateful that no life was lost, saying “as far as there is life, there is hope.”

Similarly, Muhammad Shehu, a witness told newsmen that the fire was a mystery as no one could ascertain how it started, saying it was a bad way of ending the year.


Shehu, while relaying his story about one of the burnt vehicles, said the owner had come to buy a ram for the new year festivity, only for his car to get burnt beyond recognition.

“The other two vehicles parked there did not get damaged beyond recognition, this one just couldn’t be helped.


“The owner came to buy ram, I saw him when he parked the car before I left the area for a while.

“The next thing I heard was that the area was on fire, how that happened is still a mystery. We thank God that no life was lost,” he said.


Also, the Assistant General Secretary of the market, Sani Mohammed, said the cause of the inferno still remained a mystery to the market officials and the populace.

Mohammed told newsmen that the inferno remained a mystery because all investigations by the market officials and the Lagos State Fire Service revealed no particular cause as at press time.


Mohammed said: “All I heard where I sat was fire! fire!! fire!!!

“Within a few seconds, there was chaos while everyone was running for his or her life. However, efforts are still ongoing to ascertain the cause of the inferno, ” Mohammed said.


Mohammed said the market had never recorded any history of fire outbreak for years.

An official of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), who spoke with newsmen confirmed that the cause of the inferno was still unknown.

“However, immediately we heard the alarm, we proceeded for rescue operation. The fire had almost been put off before the Lagos State Fire Service personnel arrived.

“We were supported by police officials on ground too,” the NSCDC official said.


#Newsworthy…

Delta: Fire dates timber market in Asaba.

…alleged that an electric spark


Fire has consumed goods yet to be quantified at the popular timber market, behind Chiedu Okoh Plaza, at the Asaba axis of the busy Benin-Asaba-Onitsha highway.

The fire was said to have occurred at about 7pm on Saturday, allegedly from a cold room behind the timber market, and spread rapidly into the market stocked with woods.


A resident of the area, Chukwuma Opiah, said he came “back home around 7pm in the when I saw the fire.”

Opiah alleged that an electric spark which started from the cold room was responsible for the market inferno.


He said while operatives of the fire service responded on time; emergency responders and concerned neighbours had already extinguished the inferno after it raged for about an hour.

A shop owner in the market, Steve Oliseh blamed the leadership of the market for allowing the cold room to be sited in the area.


“We have had issues with the cold room several times; it had destroyed the transformer on several occasions,” he lamented.

One of the owners of the burnt shops, Victor Okeke said he came back from his village on Sunday after hearing about the incident in the early hours of the day.

Although he mentioned that, he could not ascertain the number of shops that were affected, he revealed that most shop owners were not yet aware of the situation.

Expressing displeasure over the incident, Okeke pleaded with the government to come to the aid of victims of the fire accident.


#Newsworthy…

Thieves from Benin ekiosa market fire disaster return stolen wares fearing JuJu man curse.

Fearing being struck dead by the dreaded Ayelala juju deity, looters of goods at the burnt Ekiosa market in Benin City are said to be returning the stolen wares to the market.

Ekiosa market was razed by fire on Monday, resulting in the loss of goods worth millions of naira, with looters having a field day in the ensuing chaos that trailed the incident.

It has however come to light that the looters started returning the stolen goods from the market shortly after voodoo priests of the Ayelala deity were invited by the leadership of the market to invoke a deadly curse on those behind the fire.

The President of Edo State Market Women Association, Mrs Blacky Ogiamien, disclosed this when a delegation of the Oba of Benin, Ewuare II, paid a sympathy visit to the market.

She said several items ranging from bags of rice, rolls of wrappers, cartons and gallons of vegetable oil, and even livestock like goats, had been dumped at different parts of the market square.

She explained that the invitation of the juju priests was due to similar incidents at Satana, Oliha and Uwelu spare part markets which left many families in turmoil, insisting that if something was not done, more markets could be affected in the state.

“They have started returning our stolen goods as we invited Ayelala people to issue curses on those behind the series of pains being inflicted on market women and other traders in the state.”

“Those who are setting fire on our markets in the state and those using the opportunity to steal our goods would no longer be free this time,” Mrs Ogiamien said.

One of the affected traders whose goods were returned, Mr Gentle Imuetinyan Usoh, said the invitation of juju priests was appreciated, expressing hope that more of their stolen goods would be recovered soon.

“Since Ayelala was called into this market fire incident early today, we have started getting back some of our stolen goods.

“Many of my goods which I thought were burnt by the fire have been brought to the side of the market today. I still believe that our other goods would be fully recovered,” he said.

“Some goods returned included goats, bags of rice, including money and television sets.”

#Newsworthy…

Obaseki explains how arsonists attacks fire fighters during fire outbreak in Edo Ekiosa market

The Edo State Government has shed more light on the activities of suspected arsonists, working in cohorts with unscrupulous politicians under the aegis of the disbanded Edo Peoples Movement (EPM), to sabotage markets in Benin metropolis and the state government.

The State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, said this when he led members of the state executive council to inspect the extent of damage at Osa market (Ekiosa) and the Edo Development Property Agency (EDPA) after the Sunday, December 22 inferno.

He said that the incident was not an accident, but the handiwork of arsonists out to sabotage markets and discredit government.

The governor, who approved the release of N100 million to compensate traders whose goods were destroyed in the fire incident, noted that it was unfortunate that different markets in the state have been gutted by fire within a short period, a development he attributed to the antics of the enemies of the state.

The governor said intelligence reports indicated that some people who are disgruntled over his reforms and programmes targeted at improving the welfare of the people, were behind the recent infernos in markets.

The governor decried the new dimension of fire incidents in the state, where these suspected arsonists, prevent firefighters from gaining access to markets being gutted by fire.

He said the fire incidents were politically motivated by the disgruntled politicians, who had vowed to make government unbearable for him.

According to him, “They say they want to shame us; they tried other tricks, but did not succeed. They say they will cause havoc during this Yuletide, but their plans will fail.

“You cannot tell me that the fire on the 6th floor of the EDPA building was an accident. It is a clear case of arson. We had passed the market to Edo Central Senatorial District. We got to hear about the fire at about 10am. The Fire Department was sent in from the University of Benin (UNIBEN), but the people attacked them.”

“Last week, when a similar incident occurred, firefighters came in to quell the fire in Oliha market and the people chased them. There is a pattern to what they are doing.

“They should try whatever they like, but we will continue to work for the people of the state; they cannot remove us from Edo,” he said.

He asked the market women association to submit a list of traders whose goods were burnt in the market so they could be compensated, adding, “The traders should come up with a list so we can assist you to start again. The money will be given to you through Sterling Bank.”

The governor said the market would be rebuilt from early 2020, while a section of it would be cleared for the traders to use as a temporary arrangement.

He added that the state government has decided to take over the security of markets from local councils and would work with market associations to secure markets, noting that markets without fire extinguishers and borehole would be shutdown.

Responding to the proposed security framework for markets, the Edo Commissioner of Police, Mr Lawan Jimeta, said he would deploy his men to ensure the success of the arrangement and provide the needed strategic backing.

#Newsworthy…

Tragic: Pandemonium as Popular Ekiosa Market In Benin City Caught Fire.

…Nigeria is a mess

A tragic incident occurred today in Benin as the popular Ekiosa market was razed down by fire.

Facebook user, Zion Ose who shared a video from the scene of the incident, alleged that the State’s Fire Service who were notified of the incident said they didn’t have water.

He wrote;

Ekiosa market, Benin, on fire. Over 1hour and there’s still no sign of fire service men. They said they don’t have water. Yet, over 30billion has been budgeted for the renovation of a building for fools!

Truth is, Nigeria is a mess. A joke. A murderer! You need to hear the sound of this raging fire like it’s war.

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#Newsworthy…