…Why am yet to rebuild Ariaria Int’l market – Ikpeazu speaks
The traders and shop owners in Ariaria International Market, Aba, has called on the Abia State government to come to their aid as the present state of the market is making them loosing billions of Naira each day.
The traders in the market cried out to Ikpeazu led government to, as a matter of urgency do something before the market will collapse.
But governor Ikpeazu in chat with the Online Media Practitioners of Nigeria, Abia State chapter said the present state of the market is caused by the traders, citing none compliance of the traders.
Recently, when Online Media Practitioners toured round Aba, also visited the market, they interviewed some of the traders, which they spoke their mind and why the state government needs to fix Ariaria market before the next rainy season.
A trader, who simply identify herself as Nkiru, said the place right now (pointing at the market environs) is only accessible because of dry season.
According to her; “During the rainy season, like the months of May, June, July – when it rains, because of the blocked drainages which makes the water unable to flow, the flood caused by the rain will flow into peoples’ shops – damaging goods and products worth millions of naira.
She noted that because of bad road and decayed environment, customers, especially people from Calabar, Akwa Ibom, Port Harcourt and Cameroon are no longer coming.
“We are calling on the state government to fix the market, we need a good market environment to enable us sell our products and also, to keep our customers, Nkiru, said.
“Our customers have abandoned us, even the ones living in Aba, some of them are no longer coming, we are loosing money every day, some of our goods spoilt because of low patronage, if care is not taken, the market will collapse, she added.
Meanwhile, the state governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu has assured that Ariaria market will never crumple, according to him, If eventually the traders will comply with his administration grand plan, the market environment would have a great look and accessible.
He noted that last time he visited the market, he told the market heads of his plan by remodeling the market, but after much deliberation, the market heads will go out and form a group, about 10-15 groups will be formed within the gap of 5 minutes that will come up against the state government grand plan.
“I have visited Ariria market, gathered the market heads, I told them my grand plan and how it will work out for them, but in turn, they rejected my plan, forming splinter group that will say, No! we don’t agree with your plan.
“My initial plan is to cover the Ariaria market rooftop, I mean, cover the rooftop both the walkways, then the market ground floor will be demolished and made open, cars and lorries can still enter into the market, with this, when it rains, there will be no drop of water into the market.
“Also, while covering the rooftop, I will raise the market building into three storey building. Shops in Ariaria are only two storey building, but I will raise it to three, install electric lifters that will help people going up and down.
“I will issue, the shop owners the Certificate of Ownership (C. of. O), then the extended upper floor will be the only way the government will benefit, the shops at the 3rd floor will be government own, that is my plan for Ariaria, but the traders said no, that they won’t allow the government addition of shop at the top.
“Seriously, I’m worried about the condition of the market, I have plans, but saying that the market is generating a huge revenue for the state government, is something I don’t believe, because I have never seen it, Ikpeazu said.
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