FOODSTUFF SELLERS AT EKE AWKA MARKET REOPEN FOR BUSINESS AMID ALLEGED EXTORTION
Some traders and stakeholders in Anambra State have commended the Government for its decision to close emergency food markets designated in the area following the extension of restriction on movements by two weeks.Those who spoke with Radio Nigeria, had queried how they would transport food items to the designated areas, Awka Temporary Stadium and Demonstration Primary School at the back of Government House Awka.
As the food stuff dealers commenced trading at Eke Awka, many of them and their customers said they were relieved of a huge economic burden.A Political Affairs Commentator, Comrade Okechukwu Onyema said he was happy that the State Government listened to the masses by changing its earlier decision to lift the people’s burden.
Comrade Onyema also urged the State Government to institute a task force to arrest agents allegedly collecting levies from traders and tricycle operators, despite its suspension. A retired Public Servant and trader, Mr Emma Nnaemeka said the directive to return to markets was good as there was no plan to make the new sites conducive for commercial activities.
Mr Nnaemeka also urged the Government to continuously embark on campaigns to educate traders on the importance of social distancing. A kolanut seller simply called Aunty Chinwe, while expressing happiness over the development, noted that the stadium was far and offered no security to them.
Miss Mmesoma Okafor told Radio Nigeria that she had been paying about #700 as revenue to agents, stressing that the Task Force would impound their goods if they failed to pay, even as she appealed for Government’s intervention to stop the alleged extortion.
Other foods stuff traders at Eke Awka garage, including, Mrs Ifeoma Okoye claimed that she paid about #450 daily to revenue agents, despite its suspension, while a woman who deals in beverages alleged that Eke Awka Task Force demanded #5000 before she could open her shop.