By Stanley Onyekwere
Traders are expected to resume their trading activities at the Dutsen-Alhaji market, in Bwari Area Council of the nation’s capital city, following approval by FCT Administration for its reopening, barely nine days after closure.
Recall that the busy market was last week shut down over the riot that took place in the market, which resulted in the burning of Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) office in the area.
Briefing journalists on the development, the Chairman, FCT Ministerial Task Team on Traffic Management, Ikharo Attah the decision to reopen the market came after a series of meetings involving Bwari Area Council Chairman, market managers and the traders.
Attah noted that while all the stakeholders agreed that more time is needed to effectively ensure clean up of the market, with the commitment shown by the traders the Administration decided to reopen the market for commercial activities even as the clean up is ongoing.
“After our deliberation, we met with the trader union, market managers, developers as well as Bwari Area Council, discussed and agreed that while we want to push for more time it is apt for us to also understand from our own point as the enforcers that time are indeed very tough for Nigerians.
“We believe that we need more time to clean up the market but with commitment from the traders, managers, the developers and Bwari Area Council, we also believe that it is apt for us to look at this from the lens of humanity and empathy, while we also do what we consider as appropriate.
“On that note, with the kind approval of the FCT Minister, I announced that the Dutsen-Alhaji market which was closed 9 days ago is hereby declared open and trading activities are billed to commence tomorrow by 7am.
“We want to appeal that those who do not own shops in the market, either informal sector or lockup shops do not have any business in the market.
“We also appeal to traders to work and abide by the rules that they have all signed and we also appeal to market managers of both the Dutse market and the Oloye Olajumoke market to please not add any attachment to any market that that is not approved by the Development Control department,” he said.
Responding on behalf of the traders, Chairman, Oloye Olajumoke Arcade Traders Association, Abdulaziz Gumel promised that the Association will take upon itself to ensure that the traders in the market comply with all the laid down rules governing the operation of the market.
Similarly, the Business manager, Eflaye International Limited, the managers of Oloye Olajumoke market, Paul Poroku, thanked the Administration for the decision, even as he promised that the will ensure that the traders abide by the rules governing the market.