Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Fire has razed property worth millions of naira at Ege (Cassava) Market in Eleyele area of Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, which is reputed for cassava processing and sale of cassava products, including starch, fufu and garri.
The inferno is reported to be the second in the market within the space of two months. The number of burnt shops could not be ascertained as at press time. But a section of the market, known as Ifesowapo, Iso-Ege, was said to have been affected.
Findings from the scene of the inferno revealed that there was power supply in the area when the incident occurred, a development which raised a level of suspicion among victims and residents in the area.
Some of the affected traders appealed to the state government to come to their aid as they counted their losses.
One of the affected traders, Modupe Adepoju, said: “It is a loss beyond imagination. I process cassava and I make starch. My grinding machines and pots got completely damaged. Our shops, equipment and cassava products had been destroyed by fire. We are appealing to the government for assistance.”
An eyewitness, Dorcas Olasunkanmi, said: “The fire razed the entire Iso-Ege market before the arrival of officials of the Oyo State Fire Service.”
Deputy Director of fire service in the state Mashood Adewuyi accused traders of negligence, adding that the incidents could be as a result of human error.