From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Ongoing protest by market women in Ughelli, Delta State, is taking a toll on socio-economic activities on the East-West Road where hundreds of travellers have been stranded.
Some of the women, who spoke to newsmen, said they resorted to the protest to draw attention of the state and the Federal Governments to the alleged injustice and extortion by political and traditional authorities in the area.
One of the protesters, Rose Edede said: “They said none of us should come to the market, that anybody caught selling will be arrested and taken to the police station. They said all of us should relocate to Okogbe road, that they have provided a space for us there.
“But when we got there, the place was a swamp, for you to do anything there, you will have to sand-fill the place and we don’t have the money for that because we are petty traders.
“When some of us went there, they asked them to pay N25,000 for a very small portion that can contain only one table. If you have more than one table, you will pay for two slot which is N50,000 and which is outside the money you will spend to sad-fill the place….
“We are appealing to the state government to open the Ughelli/Ogor Modern Market for us so that we can go there and sell.”
Secretary to Ughelli North, Felix Oderohwo, who addressed the protesting women, appealed to them to allow the traffic to flow, promising that all their grievances would be properly addressed.