The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), has disclosed that the Garki International market will not be reopened until the traders heed sanitation guidelines.
Senior Special Assistant to Minister of FCT on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement, Ikharo Attah stated this when he visited the market with Director Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), Osilama Braimah to reassess the cleanliness of the environment.
He said despite the closure of the market since last Friday, there was still refuse in different locations within the market.
The board had sealed the Garki market over poor sanitation and the inability of the traders to take necessary measures to keep to the desired standard set by the Administration.
Attah noted that the minister of FCT Mallam Muhammad Bello wants a clean and safe Abuja, therefore necessary steps must be put in place to uphold the standard.
“The present stage of the Garki market is a disaster waiting to happen, we have gone around the market to check the level of sanitation but is still bad. We sealed it last Friday, so by now, there are supposed to be some signs of seriousness on the part of traders.
“The Abuja Environmental Protection Board AEPB has acted in line with the Ministerial directives, any part of Abuja either market, school or office must be kept clean “.
Collaborating, the Director Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), Osilama Braimah said the board was keen on reopening the market but was not satisfied with the level of hygiene.
“This is about my fourth visit to the market, but it is still in a deplorable state, very filthy. We are planning to reopen the market but looking at what is on the ground is not possible, hopefully, it will be in a few days to come”
A tailor in the market, Umar Hamza said the Garki market has been shut in the last 5 days due to uncleanliness, and he pleaded for mercy.
“AEPB shut the market about 5 days ago, we pleaded for more time in order to clean and evacuate the wastes. The waste has accumulated due to the trader’s refusal to pay the current service charge imposed by Abuja Market Management Limited, we are appealing to FCT Administration to feel our pains, We have lost billions in the last few days over the closure”
Daniel Kalu also a trader in the market, said: “We have even started the clean-up of the market, all the refuse dumps have been reduced to a little as a result of our clean-up exercise.
“Why we stop was because of a Court issue, you know some of our people went to Court because they consider the service charge placed on us to be too much, so they want Abuja Market Management Limited to reduce charges, but I can confirm to you that they have gone to the Court to withdraw the case.
“We are pleading with the AMML to come to our aid by reopening the market for us, on our part we are ready to ensure that the cleanup of the market is completed” he said.
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