By NewsCritic Reporters
Leader of Ubani Main Market Traders Association, Hon Chikodi Chukwunyere, aka Nwoko Okpoo has appealed to Abia State governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu and the Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Chinedum Enyinnaya Orji to save the Ubani Main Market founded by then governor T.A Orji from decay and abandonment.
Hon Chikodi Chukwunyere in an interview with newsmen in Umuahia said that the dream of then Governor T.A Orji for the Ubani Main Market should not be allowed to die or waste away, and called on Abia State government to ensure that the market is brought back to life to be the International Market it was designed to be.
The Ubani Main Market Leader spoke against the backdrop of growing complaints by traders in the market over lack of business activities in the market occasioned by failure of traders to relocate to the market as directed by the state government.
Mr Nwoko Okpoo explained that Chief T.A Orji did very well to establish the market at a good site, adding that now it appears that the dream for establishing the market is gradually dying because of neglect. He said that it’s unheard of that a government will give orders and it would be violated by ordinary individuals.
Said Chikodi Chukwunyere “we’re the first people at the Ubani Main Market, and today I am a leader at the market. The Ubani Main Market is a very good site and I believe that the governor then, Chief T.A Orji did very well to establish that market. But it looks like the dream is dying because if you look at what is going on in the market and what is going on in the town you will agree with me that all is not well in the market. But we pray that by God’s grace and through Governor Okezie Ikpeazu that market will resurrect back to life again”.
“The problem there if you ask me is that I believe the government neglected that market. If you go to Imo, Akwa Ibom and Ebonyi, when there is a law on something, they work towards implementing that law, but here some of our brothers from neighbouring states are the one causing these problems by thwarting government laws and order.
“When the government then pushed the traders to Ubani Main Market we stayed there and I believe I’m not going to leave the market except I’m leaving the country. I will like to advice the government that if they want to get rid of the traders in the town, they should involve us. We know that some people are doing business with this street trading thing and that’s why it’s seems it is difficult to stop it.
“Let the government involve the traders from Ubani in the taskforce because you can’t bring people from Aba or civil servants to enforce the relocation order, it won’t work. Ubani Market was established by Chief T.A Orji, who wanted to make Umuahia what it should be. The market has not less than 12,000 shops but the existing ones are less than 500 shops, the others are empty.
“When we talk of insecurity there are some lines you will stay for a year without seeing anybody and we pray these hoodlums will not use it as their hide out. Big lorries should go to Ubani Market to offload and not parking along the road. The Ubani park will take not less than 200 trailers comfortably.
“So, I’m pleading with Gov Ikpeazu, the Deputy Governor and the Speaker who is a visionary leader, not to allow the dream of his father to die. I love that family; they should join hands together to see that the Ubani market dream become a reality and that the market returns back to life again”.
“Also, another thing Government should do for us is to construct the Agbor-Umueze road, which is the shortest route to Ubani Market. I tell you that someone from Uwalaka Street will trek to Ubani market from there if govt can remember to do that road to help the market, Mr Chukwunyere notes.