Obiano receives report on fire incident; assures Anambrarians of safer markets
The Governor of Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano has made clear the intention of his administration to prevent future occurrence of fire disasters in markets across the state particularly the Ose-Okwodu market Onitsha where the Ogboji section was gutted by fire recently. The Governor made the commitment while receiving the report of a 7-man Committee set up a fortnight ago to carry out investigation into the remote and immediate causes of the fire incident in the market and come up with some far-reaching recommendations that would help to avert future occurrences. Receiving the report from the chairman of the Committee, Igwe Rowland Odegbo, Abogu II of Nteje, at the Executive Chambers of the Government House, Awka, the state capital, the Governor expressed the expectation that the recommendations would among other things ensure that the frequency of fire incident in markets would be a thing of the past and that measures taken would improve the conditions of markets and the trading environment. According to him, 'for instance Onitsha Main Market at present has outgrown its original design and needs immediate attention to check over-crowding, encroachment into the open spaces and construction of illegal make shift stalls. The spaces are cluttered such that movement is hampered during emergency situations like fire outbreak, even fire trucks can't get to the scenes on time. Such a situation is not ideal for modern markets.' Governor Obiano reiterated the determination of his administration to give a facelift to markets in the State to make them more conducive and easily accessible to human and vehicular traffics, adding that the government would ensure that they are provided with necessary infrastructural amenities and adequate security.
The Governor thanked the Committee for the promptness and the speed with which they deliberated and submitted the report. He observed that the volume of the document showed that the committee was meticulous and devoted much time and energy in carrying out the assignment, and expressed hope that their recommendations when accepted would go a long way in proffering solutions, checking future occurrences and assuaging the feelings of those affected by the fire. Furthermore, Governor Obiano pointed out that the improving security situation in major cities across Anambra state is undoubtedly leading to renewed boom in economic activities with more traders coming to markets in the state to trade without let or hindrance by miscreants and thereby help in creating wealth in the state. Obiano was particularly delighted that there are reports of improving security awareness and appreciation by the people who are showing signs of cooperation with the security agencies by providing information to them to help in their investigations. Earlier while presenting the report of the Committee, Igwe Rowland Odegbo thanked the governor for the honour done them to serve the state and stated that the cooperation and sacrifice by members of the committee was responsible for the timely production of the report within the two weeks time frame. The Odegbo-led Committee has other members like Chief Chuma Eruchalu, Barrister C.I. Okoye, Mmr. Emma Ndubuisi, Superintendent of Police, Fasugba Temitope, Mrs Promise Ezeigwe and Mrs Grace Okonkwo.