The Government of Ebonyi State led by His Excellency, Engineer David Nweze Umahi, has kicked off a movement to maintain cleanliness and orderliness in the city (Hossana Park). The program took place on Tuesday, 30th July 2019, at the Abakaliki Abakpa Main Market.
The Special Assistant to the Governor on Capital City, Market and Transport, Chief Ejem Okoro, visited the Hossona Old Park located at the hillside of the market, with the state Taskforce. He surveyed the movement of people and traders in the old park then stated that from his observations, there should be more orderliness in the market as it concerns the entire city of Abakaliki.
The S.A further interacted with some stakeholders and traders in the market, making known the intention of the state Government to the people which he said, is to maintain a clean city and orderly movement of people so as to avoid any act of indiscipline.
Chief Okoro described the Old Park as one of the best in the city and as a result, should not be in disarray. He also said, there are some strategies mapped out to control and maintain orderliness within the market or in the park.
“Abakpa market has been slated out for a purpose; to the main international market. The government have been urging traders to buy shops in the international market because the Abakpa market is not giving Abakaliki a befitting sight, it is a kind of nuisance to the city. You know, Abakpa market was built when Abakaliki was like a plantation and now it has turned to a modern city.
Meanwhile, there is every need that something should be done and once it is done, the issue of petty traders will be taken care of.
Since the Government of Engr. David Nweze Umahi will take care of you then the issue is to advise them to organize themselves and then present their needs so that the government will look into it and not by disobeying government policies.
The Hossana old park is one of the cleanest parks, in fact, His Excellency has done tremendous work there and even the petty traders believed that they have not seen such wonderful work before.”
The Secretary to the National Union of Road and Transport Workers (NURTW) of the park, Mr. Jeremiah Egboma, complained that some of the traders and road users disobey the Government order. According to the Secretary:
“These people do not allow the magnanimity of the state government to play. They often display their goods in the park and if you order them out, they will still come back. Go to the other park, you will see people we ordered out, order them out today, they will come back tomorrow. We have attended meetings severally and heard that the Chairman of Hossana park is the one who allows the traders to display their goods in the middle of the road.
However, there is something our drivers do that I don’t like; they drive one-way along the park. When you leave your lane and begin to follow another lane, other people will occupy it. Therefore, we are grateful to His Excellency for the work he is doing, even at the park in Spera-in-Deo. And we plead with the government to bring road signposts so that they will stop driving one-way.”
A dealer in fertilizer who is also a patron of the Hossana Street Traders, Mr. Friday Nweda, appreciated the efforts of the present government to maintain order, even in the market. He further advised the government to be mindful of false taskforce.
“I like what the government is doing, because, the road/park was constructed for the passage of cars and people/traders but now the purpose of this construction is not maintained. Traders now use wheelbarrows and other goods to obstruct movement. I support what the present administration is doing but mind you, after you are done, some fake people will come and say that the government sent them, and they will be collecting money from traders. ”
He further complained that the motorists no longer make use of the park, saying that such is the reason traders occupy the park.
“The Hossana park is meant for the motorist to load but rather you see the motorists do their loading along the road. So, the traders have seen that they are not using the park and decided to display their own goods there. But since you have come, we believe that something better will be done. ”
By Udo Akam-Alo