Fire de­stroys prop­er­ties in Ogun mar­ket

The Punch - - METRO - Deji Lambo

THERE was panic at the Kara Mar­ket on Tues­day as fire gut­ted a sec­tion of the mar­ket lo­cated off the La­gos-ibadan Ex­press­way in Ogun State.

It was gath­ered that some traders ran hel­ter-skel­ter, while oth­ers re­sorted to pack­ing their goods to pre­vent them from be­ing con­sumed by the rag­ing fire, which started around 10am.

It was learnt that about 40 shops, some stor­age fa­cil­i­ties and rooms were con­sumed by the inferno.

As of the time of fil­ing this re­port, the value of the burnt prop­er­ties and goods had yet to be de­ter­mined.

A lottery agent, Tunde Ti­amiyu, said he was at­tend­ing to cus­tomers when the fire started, adding that no­body could as­cer­tain the cause.

He stated, “No­body can say what caused the fire; we just saw peo­ple rush­ing to carry their be­long­ings. The fire started around 10am and cus­tomers were busy plac­ing bets in my shop when it started and we couldn’t fin­ish stak­ing the bets as every­body rushed out for safety.

“We were able to carry some of our ter­mi­nals out, which are very im­por­tant to my busi­ness.”

A shop owner, Ya­haya

Us­man, while lament­ing the loss of his goods, said this was the third time the mar­ket would be burnt in 2019.

Us­man said, “The fire started from a woman’s shop and it spread ev­ery­where and burnt our shops. I have lost a lot of my goods and can­not de­ter­mine the value.

“This is the third time that fire will burn this mar­ket.

Peo­ple don’t lis­ten when those in charge of the mar­ket speak. Traders have been banned from cook­ing in­side their shops but they don’t lis­ten”

An­other trader, Abi­ola Ajayi, said the fire was caused by traders in the mar­ket, who were fond of po­si­tion­ing gas cylin­ders and gen­er­a­tors close to each other.

The Sec­re­tary of the mar­ket,

Ba­balola Ade­wale, said, “We will not al­low any­body to build any­thing there un­til the man­age­ment vis­its the scene to de­ter­mine what should be done. We tell the traders to use blocks to re­build their struc­tures in­stead of planks, but they don’t lis­ten.”

The Director, Ogun State Fire Ser­vice, Fa­tai Ade­fala, said, “There was no ca­su­alty be­cause we were there to put the fire under con­trol. We also called for as­sis­tance from the La­gos State Fire Ser­vice. The peo­ple at the Kara Mar­ket wanted to at­tack us, but the se­cu­rity men pre­vented them from do­ing so and we did our job per­fectly.

“The rea­son for the at­tempted at­tack was that when fire oc­curred, they ex­pected the fire ser­vice to be on the ground im­me­di­ately. Prop­er­ties and a ve­hi­cle were de­stroyed.”

Photo: Goke Fa­madewa

• Scene of the fire

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