Sanwo-Olu meets Amu traders, allays fears of government’s takeover of plank market
• Katangua market traders appeal judgment against forced eviction
The Lagos State governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has assured traders at Amu plank market in Mushin Local Government Area of the state of government’s support. Sanwo-Olu, who gave the assurance during a visit to the market yesterday, which was gutted by fire between Friday night and Saturday morning, also allayed fears of the traders of government’s takeover of their land and property.
He urged the traders to remain peaceful and law abiding, adding that those who do not have any business around the area should stay away to avoid further injuries.
The fears of the traders were laid to rest as the rumour mill hag gone agog that the market would be repossessed from the traders after evacuation of the debris and handed over to a private developer as is usually the situation with collapsed buildings or burnt markets, which end up being forfeited to the state government.
In the wee hours of Saturday, fire had razed properties at Amu market in Mushin, which saw a lot of residents homeless and helpless. It was reported that more than a dozen of traders slumped and were rushed to the hospital on receiving the news that the market had been razed down to rubbles. The fire lasted for over 12 hours before it could be put off with an estimated N10 billion worth of property going up in flames.
The head of the market, Baba Ólója told newsmen: “The fire started at about 11:00 p.m. and we never knew about it. We thank the fire fighters who came to our rescue at about 4:00 a.m. but by then we had lost properties worth a whooping N10 billion. Amidst it all, we thank God that no life was lost to the fire.”
The governor expressed his deepest condolence and affirmed that the people will retain the market and the government will take care of the site the accident occurred. He also urged citizens to leave the site of the accident and allow the experts to take care of the aftermath.
The governor’s unannounced visit drew thousands of people to the site, who were scared of loosing the market to the state government.
Meanwhile, traders at Katangua market, under the auspices of Misimisi Dealers Market Association and Frontline Progressive Market Association, Abule Egba International Market, Lagos, have filed an appeal against the judgment delivered by Justice Grace Onyeabo of a Lagos High Court on December 17, 2019.
Justice Onyeabo had in a suit delineated ID/177/2008 dismissed the groups (claimants) claims that the defendants authorised them to build their respective shops as owners or occupier in Abule Egba International Market, Katangwa.
Chief Sylvanus Odus Ikejiobi, Chief Oris Ugoma Orih, Alhaji Abdulmumuni Abubakar, Nduji Donatus, Innocent Nwakaeso, Nwaibe Anthony and Ifeanyi Mba sued for themselves and as representative of the market associations.
The claimant had instituted the suit against the Alimosho Local Government Council, Agbado Oke-Odo Local Council Development Area and the Attorney-General of Lagos State and Commissioner for Justice as first to third respondents.
The traders claimed they are owners of the shops built by them in the said market on the land allocated to them pursuant to letters of allocation and agreement as approved by the Alimosho Local Government Council, Agbado Oke-Odo Local Council Development Area. The traders alleged that the Lagos State government intends to demolish the market built independently and use it for a computer village against their will.
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