From Dom Ekpunobi, Onitsha
At least 5,000 ejected traders, mostly women who deal in perishables, yesterday, protested their ejection along St. Jude/Silas Works Axis Fegge, Onitsha, and in the process, about 20 of them sustained injuries.
The protesting women alleged ejection from their market places by agents of the Anambra State government.
They said that they would not continue to be pushed around and threatened to relocate to Delta state.
Reacting, the patron of the traders, Chief Linus Odiogbu expressed surprise that security operatives could eject them from the market at Fegge after being ejected earlier from Coca-Cola axis along the Onitsha/Asaba Expressway.
He said; “In the early morning of today (yesterday) at about 3.00am, the police, Ocha Brigade and other security outfits stormed our market and when we came, they started shooting guns at us and we started running away; and, on the process, about 20 of the women sustained injuries”
“We are protesting the attack on us and, as it is, we have relocated now to Oko, Delta State, since Anambra State does not want us. Delta State people want us and we say bye to Anambra State,” he stated.
Mrs. Ifeoma Ochonma, woman leader in the market, said; “I was injured by the security operatives who were shooting sporadically. The agents of the state government have continued to eject us from Coca Cola axis to St. Jude/Silas, telling us that, this time, we have to relocate to Power Mike axis along Atani road.
“Since they do not want us in Anambra State, we have relocated to Delta State to sell our perishables that include; onions, plantain, cucumber, water melon, oranges, corns amongst others”.
When contacted earlier, the director of Ocha Brigade, Mr. Kenneth Okonkwo said the traders had earlier been directed to relocate to Power Mike Market approved by the State government.