By Stanley Onyekwere
Poor road network and drainage system within and around the Kurudu Relocation market have been stalling movement of traders into the market, months after significant completion of its construction.
The market situated at Kurudu, a satellite town in Abuja Municipal
Area Council (AMAC), and estimated to gulp a whopping sum of 1.5 billion Naira, is being developed by the council in partnership with AMAC-Investment and Property Development Company (IPDC) Ltd.
Retrospectively, during the ground breaking of the project in June, 2016, AMAC Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu Candido revealed that the market was conceptualized by the
last Administration, but inherited by his administration as a mark of
continuity in government. The project comprising more than 1500 shops and warehouses, fire service, hospital, police outpost and other facilities found in any modern market.
In particular, a brief overview of the Market shows that there are three categories of shops in the market with varying fixed subscription
rates; informal sector-which are cubicles that can be subscribe for the sum of five hundred naira each. Also, there are two types of lock-up shops-that go for one million-ninety thousand naira and one million-two hundred and fifty thousand Naira respectively.
When PeoplesDaily visited the market Friday (last week), it was observed that works have commenced on fixing the access road and drainage system in the area. Precisely, heavy machines were seen doing the preliminary earthworks on the dusty and rough sole access cutting through swelling refuse dumpsite.
It was also gathered that landscaping works within the market hitherto abandoned, were in top gear, to ensure its speedy completion, to pave way for allottees and dislodged traders to relocate their trades there.
As expected, due to the poor road network within and outside the market, most of the allottees and dislodged traders are not willing to move to the place, despite unrelenting appeal and campaign by authorities of AMAC for pick up shops.
Also, it was authoritatively learnt that the AMAC Chairman, Abdullahi Adam Candido had penultimate week visited the market to see things for himself, because he wants dislodged traders from Nyanya-Jikwoyi axis to immediately move into the place, and continue their trading.
According to a top official AMAC-IPDC, who preferred anonymity, besides the bad condition of the access road stalling the commencement of trading activities within the market, the company is waiting for 100% payment from more people, before handing over the keys to the shops.
Disclosing that about 250 subscribers/allottees have made 100% payment, the reliable source affirmed that there have been announcement on radio, that people have not paid fully for their allotted shops should do so immediately, so that they can be given keys for their shops.
He explains that: “What we are working on now is infrastructure( landscaping of the floors and construction of the lone access road to the market.
“We hope that the current phase of work will be completed between now and next month (November), before we start handing over the keys to allottees with 100% payment. So, we business to commence on or before the month ending.”
On the seemingly handful abandoned projects within an entire section of the market, the AMAC-IPDC official attributed the development to inability of the contractors in charge of the segment, to execute the projects.
He said most of the contracts for the abandoned projects have been revoked, and rewarded to contractors having Funds to execute them.
“AMAC did not give any money for the construction of the market, but only handed over the market to the company to coordinate its development.
“ We don’t give any contractor money, the arrangement is that they bring their funds and building shops in the market,” the source stressed.
Nevertheless, the development have continued causing and deepening despair among the targeted intending shop owners and traders, who were assured at the ground breaking of the market- that it would be ready for commissioning in six months from the date of the ground breaking.
For a business man, who gave his name as Uchedu Okeke, said as one of the dislodged traders during the recent demolition exercise along Nyanya-Jikwoyi axis, he had hoped to move into market prior to the exercise.
He lamented that he had saved money, with which to rent for a shop in the Kurudu market, but was forced into using same money to renew his hitherto shop, which was demolished last week, thereby throwing him and his family into deep state of despair and hardship.
He stressed that the money he paid for the demolished shop would have been used to acquire a shop in the relocation market.
He therefore urged AMAC authorities to urgently do the needful, to enable him and others move to place for business, as “we need to continue living.”