Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano has once again made good on a promise made before Ndi Anambra with the distribution of the sum of N10 million as palliatives to the victims of the Ose-Okwodu Market fire incident of April 2014. Speaking during the presentation of cheques to the Ninety-Seven beneficiaries at his Aguleri country home in Anambra East Local Area, governor Obiano said that the gesture was in keeping with his promise to Ndi Anambra to continue to pursue programmes that will impact positively on their lives.
The governor also assured that the government will rebuild the Ose-Okwodu Market, in Onitsha and equip it with modern facilities under a Public Private Partnership arrangement to make business transactions in the market a pleasant experience. He restated his commitment to the welfare of Ndi Anambra and the market men and women. Said Obiano:” I remember the destruction of goods I saw when I visited the market last year. I feel particularly connected with the victims of Ose market fire because my mother also has a shop within the axis which was not affected. I can tell you that it is from the proceeds that she trained me and my siblings. This is a support to enable you continue to trade and prosper in your business.”
Obiano noted that government has since commenced the implementation of the White Paper presented by the Panel on Ose Market Fire as evident in the provision of Fire truck and other fire-prevention facilities to the market and the distribution of the cash compensation. He urged traders across the various markets in the state to shun practices capable of causing such disasters in markets like cooking and misuse of electric appliances, noting that his government is working through the various Market Associations to intensify monitoring activities to ensure safety at the markets.
Earlier, Secretary to the State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu explained that following the White paper on the Panel Report, a Sub-committee was set up to devise a formula for distribution of the total sum of N10 million provided by the government, to ensure transparency and that all the affected persons benefit according to the value of their losses.
The Chairman of the Panel, Igwe Odegbo of Nteje, thanked Governor Obiano for accepting all the recommendations and keeping his promise to provide succor to the fire victims. He said that the palliatives ranged from N50,000 each and more depending on the declared and verified record of loss incurred by the affected traders; adding that the token gives financial respite to the traders and also re-enforces their confidence in the government’s commitment towards their welfare.