No less than 1000 stalls have been marked for demolition at the popular Ochanja market in the commercial city of Onitsha for being situated on the drainage channels. The Anambra State Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Dr. Obinna Ngonadi declared the planned demolition after going around the market to survey the situation.
The Commissioner embarked on the tour with the chairman of the State Physical Planning Board, Mr. Chike Maduekwe. Speaking during a visit to the market, Dr. Ngonadi said the state government would not be tolerating the illegal erection of structures in market spaces without approval from the relevant authorities, anymore.
According to him, the state government has ordered that market executives or developers planning to erect any structure inside the market should, first of all, obtain a letter of recommendation from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, before proceeding for approval from the State Physical Planning Board.
The Commissioner highlighted the ugly situation whereby some structures in the Ochanja market still under construction were almost on the verge of collapse, even as traders had fully occupied the stalls, thus posing a threat to the lives of both the traders and customers. The head of the State Physical Planning Board, Mr. Chike Maduekwe also said that Anambra State Materials Testing Laboratory would be invited to check the structural integrity of all the stalls marked for destruction.
According to him, the stalls that pass the test would go for approval and guidelines for amendment, while those that failed would go down in heaps.