By Ozioruva Aliu
BENIN CITY – AN early morning fire Monday razed down shops and goods worth millions of naira in Oba market at Oredo local government area, Benin city, the Edo state capital.
The intensity of the fire also brought down some of the walls of the buildings in the market.
This fire which cause has not been known is coming barely few days after traders were directed to return from the makeshift market to their respective market places.
Vanguard gathered that the fire started around 1am and none of the items could be saved.
When Vanguard visited the area, carcases of various burnt items could be identified.
It was learnt that the fire which started in the wee hours of Monday morning, burnt hundreds of shops including hamburger line–where they sell clothes and cosmetics.
The fire was brought under control by combined efforts of firefighters from the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Fire service, federal Fire service, Edo state fire service and the Nigerian Army school of supply and transportation, Benin.
One of the traders who sells clothes, Edith Amayo said she couldn’t salvage any of her wares as her shop was completely burnt.
“They called me around 1am today that Oba market is on fire. Reaching here, we could not find any of our goods.
She however, appealed to the government and well-meaning Nigerians to provide assistance
Another trader who deals on cosmetics, Habib said she has lost her goods worth millions of naira.
According to her, immediately they opened the market last week, “I decided to go to the market to stock my shops. Sadly, I have lost the only thing that I use to feed my family. The fire consumed all my wares. I do not have anything in my store and all commodities burnt,” she lamented.
Karebo Samson, Assistant Controller general of the federal fire service said he received a distress call from the Chief Security Officer attached to the government house in Benin and quickly mobilised his men to the market.
Expressing his pain on the incident, Chairman of Oredo council, Jenkins Osunde said he would laiase with the leadership of the market union on the way forward.
He observed that in addition to the wild wreckage done to the physical structure of the market , the textile and the livestock sections of popular trading location ”
The fire incident was said to have begun just before midnight .
The Chairman, however, expressed relief that no life was lost in the incident . Hon. Osunde also credited the quick arrival and the combined intervention of various fire fighting teams to contain the inferno from inflicting greater havoc beyond the disaster that was alreada on ground.