22 traders die in horrifying road accident in Kebbi state

Twenty-two traders have died in a motor accident that occurred on the Tunga Giwa – Ruwa road in Shanga Local Government Area of Kebbi.

The accident occurred when a Toyota Canter vehicle that tried to avoid a pot-hole, hit a motorcyclist and somersaulted, killing the cyclist and 22 passengers in the van.

The Sole Administrator of Shanga, Garba Salihu, told Governor Atiku Bagudu that the traders were returning from Tungan Giwa market when the incident happened.

Mr. Salihu said the vehicle rolled into a ditch and caught fire.

He said 22 persons on board the vehicle died on the spot, while eight sustained injuries and were receiving treatment at the Yauri General Hospital.

Mr. Bagudu, who was on an official visit to the area, participated in the funeral prayer for the victims who were buried in a mass grave.

The governor sympathised with the survivors and pledged to settle their medical bills and render further assistance.


Source: NAN

Pandemonium as Hausa, Yoruba traders clash in Ile-Ife.

At least five people have been killed in a clash between Yoruba and Hausa traders in the Sabo area of Ile-Ife in Osun state.

A resident of the ancient city told TheCable that the situation started on Tuesday, but escalated on Wednesday morning.

Adeyeye Ogunwusi, ooni of Ife, reportedly intervened through seeking the assistance of security operatives.

The security agents deployed in the town were said to have foiled an attempt of aggrieved Yoruba residents to gain access into Sabo community, which is predominantly occupied by Hausa people.

The angry mob then stormed Lagere, a neighbouring community, and attacked Hausa traders there.

A witness said security agents found it difficult to control the rampaging mob.

Many have fled Ife as a result of the crisis, which has also led to the destruction of property worth millions of naira.

Some of the persons who sustained injuries have been taken to the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (OAUTH) for medical attention.

The cause of the clash is not yet known.


Source: The Cable

Photo credit: Ikeokwu Chidozie

Angry Ekiti traders destroy government, police property.

Traders and street hawkers in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, on Wednesday resisted attempts by officials of the Ministry of Works to restrain them from displaying their wares along the roads.

Having prepared well to make huge gains in the ongoing yuletide, the traders considered the action of the task force a “disturbance,” and an attempt to deny them of their season’s profit.

They also engaged in street protests, burn fires, and even vandalizing the office of the Commissioner for Works, Funmi Ogun.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that trouble began when early on Wednesday morning, officials of the ministry, popularly called “Dagrin,” prevented street trading in the city by arresting and seizing wares of many who had displayed them on the streets.

The move angered the traders who reacted by vandalizing properties in sight, shattering windows and doors of government offices.

Ms. Ogun was said to have narrowly escaped the wrath of the protesters, who were obviously looking out for her.nigerian_police_703745209

“The task force should realize that this is festive period, Christmas is just four days while new year is less than two weeks,” one of the protesters who would not want his name mentioned, explained while speaking to journalists.

“And it is at this time that selling, especially on the streets booms. So, they ought to allow us to do our business now.

“Many of us have market stalls in the demolished markets and are awaiting spaces in the new Oja-Oba market under construction.

“We cannot afford to go and get shops now as that would be too expensive. So they should pardon us for this time. At least, we have obeyed them all along before now.

Anti-riot policemen were, however, dispatched to the scene of protest to ensure calm. They fired tear gas to disperse the protesters.

Three of the aggrieved traders were also arrested by the police.

The Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, also went to the scene to see things for himself.

Ayodele Fayose, Ekiti State Governor Photo:Pulse.ng
Ayodele Fayose, Ekiti State Governor

He appealed to the protesters to stay calm as the government would look into the cause of the problem.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti State Command, Alberto Adeyemi, told PREMIUM TIMES that the suspects were not arrested for protesting, but for vandalizing government property.

“They vandalised government properties and mashed government vehicles,” he said.

“Even the police van that was sent to curtail their activities was also destroyed, so we are investigating the matter.”

He however said the situation had been brought under control and residents were freely going about their businesses.

Cancellation of monthly sanitation in Lagos to boost productivity – Traders

Traders at Mile 12 produce market in Lagos on Thursday lauded the cancellation of monthly environmental sanitation exercise by the state government, saying it would boost economic activities.


Femi Odusanya, spokesperson, Mile 12 Traders Association, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Lagos.


The Lagos State Government announced the cancellation on Wednesday, saying “it was no longer appropriate to restrict movement of people for three hours in a mega city like Lagos’’.


Odusanya said: “The government’s decision was quite thoughtful. It has become unnecessary restraining people’s movement for three hours in this economic recession.


“Most people bringing goods from the North wait at the expressways till sanitation ends but now our goods will get to the market early with reduced waste.

“With this new development, traders will have more time to promote their businesses and contribute to the economic growth of the country.”


He, however, noted that the cancellation placed huge responsibility on the traders to intensify and maintain a clean and healthy environment while pursuing economic gain.


He said: “We have to increase our efforts in cleaning and waste disposal at the Thursday weekly market sanitation to ensure that our market is hygienic and safe for trading activities.”


Similarly, Eke Ubiji, Executive Secretary, National Association of Small and Medium Enterprise noted that the decision would create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.


Ubiji said: “Environmental sanitation is an integral part of societal governance; citizens should observe it without compulsion and restriction that will hinder economic activities.”

Protest: Benin-Lagos Highway Totally Shut Over Plans to Relocate Traders

Protesters on Monday blocked the Uselu/Ugbowo section of the Benin-Lagos highway over plans by Egor Local Government Area of Edo to relocate traders.

The protesters, under the aegis of Uselu Market Women Association, were resisting the directive to move to lock-up stores built by the council.

The women, displaying placards, blocked both sides of the highway, preventing motorists from continuing with their trips.

Some of the women said the N1.2 million charged for the stalls was too expensive for them, especially given the type of businesses most of them do.

The women said their problem was compounded by the action of the local council, which commenced the removal of their make shift shops on Monday. Mrs Celena Okon, one of the market women, described the council’s action ”as an act of wickedness”, in view of the current economic situation in the country.
“What am I selling that you will force me to pay over a million naira for a single store? I believe they should consider the worth of our businesses individually.

“Where do you expect a woman who sells only crayfish or tomatoes to get such a ridiculous amount of money to pay, when in actual fact most are in dire need of additional funds to grow their businesses,” Okon said.

Another market woman, Mrs Imade Osifo, who described the situation as pathetic, said their decision to barricade the highway was for the world to know what they were going through.

She said, “They want to force us to go into the stores and we have told them that we cannot afford the stores; that is why they are destroying our businesses.” Mrs Osifo also alleged that the council was ”insensitive to them”, especially against the backdrop of the different fees levied to allow them do business in the market.

“When the plan to construct these lock-up stores came up, they (Council) told us that the prices will be pocket friendly, especially to some of us involved in petty trading.

“But what do we have now, N1.2 million for a store is a price that most of us cannot afford; there is no way many of us can afford that now.

“Even if the country’s economy was okay, how do you expect a woman who sells only salt and Maggi to generate such,” Osifo asked.

All efforts to get authorities of Egor local council to comment on the situation proved abortive, as the Council’s Head of Service was said to be unavailable. When contacted on telephone, the Council’s spokesman, Mrs Prisca Ebvadiaro, said she was not in the position to comment on the matter.

“I cannot speak on this; there is a committee that has been set up and as such, I cannot speak on it,” Ebvadiaro said.

As at the time of filing the report, several motorists were stranded on the highway while other commuters have resorted to trekking to get to their destination. The women resisted attempts by the police to get them off the road.

Wares seized from street traders will go to prisons inmates — Okorocha.

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has unveiled the next step of his government in banning street trading in the state, saying that henceforth, seized items from anyone trading along the streets will be used to take care of prisons inmates of the state.

Okorocha revealed this yesterday in Owerri, in a release he issued to newsmen through his Chief Press Secretary, CPS, Mr Sam Onwuemeodo.

According to the release, the delay in enforcing the street-trading ban was just to demonstrate the meekness of his government, saying no further warning should be expected to that effect but that actions will ensure that the streets are kept clean.

“So, those involved in street trading should go to relief market or Egbada market to have shops to avoid regretting because when government begins to enforce the directive, goods or wares seized from those selling on the streets will be donated to the prisons and motherless babies homes.”

The release also stated that, the government has not declined in its proposed plan on the issue of markets in the state, adding that the next thing would be to take action.

Markets open as traders boycott IPOB’s sit-at-home order

The sit-at-home order by pro-Biafra groups, especially the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and the Movement for the Actualization of Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) was boycotted in Imo State Friday.

Markets, schools, government offices, as well as other public places were opened for business against the directive of the separatists groups, which ordered complete closure of all markets and business places across the Southeast to pray for the release of the detained IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kalu.

In Owerri, the Imo State capital, there was free movement as the residents went about their businesses without molestation as had earlier been feared.

Meanwhile there was heavy presence of armed Policemen who mounted at strategic locations across the capital city with their Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC).

However when contacted, MASSOB factional leader, Uchenna Madu, said that the exercise was successful across the zone.

According to him, “we achieved over sixty percent compliance in all the state and that shows that our people are committed to the struggle for a sovereign Biafra. It also shows that we are a powerful group and the people are behind what we are doing “.

On the reason for the sit-at-home, he said that “we decided to sit at home to pray for the release of Nnamdi Kanu and other detained pro-Biafra activists and also to afford our people the opportunity to reflect about the struggle”.

20 Women Traders Injured As 5,000 Protest Over Ejection

At least 5,000 ejected traders, mostly women who deal in perishables, yesterday, protested their ejection along St. Jude/Silas Works Axis Fegge, Onitsha, and in the process, about  20 of them sustained injuries.
The protesting women alleged ejection from their market places by agents of the Anambra State government.
They said that they would not continue to be pushed around  and threatened to relocate to Delta state.
Reacting, the patron of the traders, Chief Linus Odiogbu expressed surprise that security operatives could eject them from the market at Fegge after being ejected earlier from Coca-Cola axis along the Onitsha/Asaba Expressway.
He said; “In the early morning of today (yesterday) at about 3.00am, the police, Ocha Brigade and other security outfits stormed our market and when we came, they started shooting guns at us and we started running away; and, on the process, about 20 of the women sustained injuries”
“We are protesting the attack on us and, as it is, we have relocated now to Oko, Delta State, since Anambra State does not want us. Delta State people want us and we say bye to Anambra State,” he stated.
Mrs. Ifeoma Ochonma, woman leader in the market, said; “I was injured by the security operatives  who were shooting sporadically. The agents of the state government have continued to eject us from Coca Cola axis to St. Jude/Silas, telling us that, this time, we have to relocate to Power Mike axis along Atani road.
“Since they do not want us in Anambra State, we have relocated to Delta State to sell our perishables that include; onions, plantain, cucumber, water melon, oranges, corns amongst others”.

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NEMA Urges State Govts To Compel Traders To Purchase Fire Insurance

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has urged state governments to compel traders to purchase an insurance policy against fire disasters.


Major James Eze, the out-going Zonal Co-ordinator of NEMA in Enugu, who made the call at a news conference on Wednesday, said that such gesture would enable the government to protect itself from numerous demands for assistance from traders affected by fire disasters.


Eze also said that the compulsion of the traders to purchase fire insurance would help manage disasters.


“The states should use the compulsory acquisition of insurance as a sword and a shield. A sword in the sense that it will use it to manage disasters, and as a shield to protect itself against numerous requests or rather demands for assistance from people, who are affected by fire disasters.


“Now a lot of things happen; people who are engaged in business – you allow your business and wares to be destroyed, something you use 30, 40, 50 years to build, would be destroyed by fire.


You cannot go and acquire insurance say let me put a hedge against my wares or my business so that when I am suffering a loss, I will not suffer a total loss.


I will have to insure my items for a million (naira) or two.


Then when these things happen, you don’t blame them, they don’t have any place to run to.


They go to government and say `government help me oh; I am distressed’.


So, the government should make sure that every trader in a market acquires insurance (policy)

In fact it (insurance cover) should be a license for you to trade.’’


The zonal co-ordinator, who allayed the fears of traders about insurance policies, said that erring insurers would be sanctioned by the National Insurance Commission.


On NEMA’s activities in the zone, which comprises Enugu, Ebonyi, and Anambra states, Eze said that the agency undertook 27 relief interventions for emergency victims, assessment of 28 disaster situations, and held 11 workshops for stakeholders in disaster management.


He identified insufficient vehicles as the biggest challenge facing the zonal office of the agency.




N60b Soft Loans Coming For One Million Traders

No fewer than one million traders and artisans are billed to get a soft loan of N60,000 each this year as part of the safety nets for the poor in Budget 2016, it was learnt at the weekend.

An insight into the budget estimates, which the Senate is still dilly dallying over, revealed that this plan will cost an estimated N60 billion.

Yesterday, Senior Special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on National Assembly matters Senator Ita Enang confirmed that the president had written a letter to the National Assembly on the budget which is expected to be read by the presiding officers during plenary tomorrow.

A senior federal government official at the weekend described the controversy in the Senate regarding two versions of the proposed budget as a “distraction and a storm in a tea-cup.”

The official added that the budget estimates are a bunch of proposals which would only become sacrosanct relatively after becoming an appropriation. “To now have all this hue and cry on alleged versions; and switched copies is not just a distraction, but a storm in a tea-cup.”

Ready for the implementation of the proposal among others in the budget, the official confirmed the appointment of Mrs Maryam Uwais as a Special Adviser to the President working the Office of the Vice President, who will be in charge the programme.

There are five other social investment plans of the Buhari administration already provided for in the budget with about N500 billion to be spent, which is nine per cent of the total budget.

Credit: Nation