Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo has approved the release of N100 million to compensate traders whose goods were burnt in the Ekiosa market inferno that happened on Sunday.
Mr Obaseki gave the directive on Monday when he led members of the state executive council to inspect the extent of damage at the market and the Edo Development Property Agency.
The governor said it was unfortunate that fire gutted different markets in the state within a short time, which he described as handiwork of enemies.
He asked the market association to submit the list of traders whose goods were burnt in the inferno so they could be compensated.
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“The traders should come up with a list so we can assist you to start again. The money will be given to you through Sterling Bank,” he said.
Mr Obaseki said the market would be rebuilt from early 2020, but a section of it would be cleared for the traders to use for the main time.
He said the state government had decided to take over the security of markets from local government councils and would work with the market associations in securing the markets.
The governor said that, henceforth, markets without fire extinguishers and borehole would be closed down.
He urged the traders to be security conscious and report suspicious activities to relevant authorities to prevent recurrence.
Responding to the proposed security of market by state government, the Edo Commissioner of Police, Lawan Jimeta said he would deploy his men and provide the needed strategy for the security.
He said that investigation was ongoing to unravel the cause of the fire in the market, promising that the perpetrators would be brought to book.
Blacky Ogiamien, the Leader of Edo Market Women Association, described the incessant fire incidents in markets around Benin metropolis as satanic and commended the state government for its support to those affected by the fire.